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About Us

 

Who we are

We are a national organization of workers and allies who have come together to support and promote labour rights and labour organizing for women, men and transsexual/transgendered workers engaged in erotic labour in Canada.

We define erotic labour as the commercial provision of erotic or sexual relaxation, entertainment or companionship services. This includes escorting, erotic massage, body rub, street work, erotic dancing, professional bdsm, porn performance/modelling and various other forms of sex work.

Currently, we are most active in Ontario and Quebec; we are, however, planning to expand, and welcome questions or involvement from workers and allies across Canada.

 

Our guiding principles

First and foremost, we know that all forms of erotic labour constitute legitimate work and that erotic-trade workers are entitled to the same basic human and labour rights as other working people. These rights include the following:

·       the right to the decriminalization of all aspects of   prostitution and all other forms of erotic labour

·       the right to be free from state regulations and constraints that are more repressive than those imposed on other workers and businesses (whether through criminal law, licensing or other mechanisms)

·       the right to recognition and protection under labour and employment laws

·       the right to fair and equitable income taxation (i.e. no “sin” taxes)

·       the right to work independently, collectively or for third parties

·      the right to work as independent contractors (with recognized contracts-for-service) or employees (with recognized contracts-of-service) or to be self-employed

·       the right to form and join professional associations

·       the right to unionization and collective bargaining

·       the right to travel and legally cross borders to work

·       the right of all migrant workers, including undocumented workers, to labour protections and fair practices

 

Our purpose

Our purpose is to establish, promote and uphold basic labour rights for people working in erotic labour. We seek economically and physically secure work conditions and relationships in all sectors of the trade.

In general terms, this means fighting for improved working conditions, health and safety on the job, and fair treatment by employers and government agencies. More specifically, we are dedicated to assisting workers in negotiating fair work practices and conditions with employers (e.g. earnings, hiring/termination procedures, scheduling, grievance procedures, physical condition of work venue and equipment, etc.) and upholding workers’ rights when contracts or employment laws are violated. We will also work to end hiring/scheduling practices that discriminate unfairly on such grounds as age, race, or body type. We are committed to challenging unfair or unreasonable government laws, regulations or practices that impose excessively restrictive conditions on erotic-labour workers (e.g. oppressive and exclusionary licensing and zoning regulations) or that fail to extend basic labour rights and protections to workers in the erotic trades.

 

What we do

In order to meet our objectives, we will pursue the following activities:

·       seek out unions, labour-rights groups and individuals interested in supporting our mission and goals & assist them in developing policies and strategies regarding erotic labour

·       seek out lawyers and legal clinics interested in supporting both the Guild and individual erotic-trade workers

·       lobby relevant government bodies regarding labour rights for erotic-trade workers

·       assist individual workers and groups of workers in achieving rights and protections under labour laws

·       assist individual workers and groups of workers in developing work contracts and upholding their legal rights under such contracts

·       assist individual workers and groups of workers in negotiating work agreements and work-site conditions with employers/management

·       develop, where appropriate, occupational health and safety guidelines for various erotic-labour sites

 

 

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Copyright 2004 by The Canadian Guild for Erotic Labour