For the rights of sex workers - Against stigma and criminalisation.



This speech was written by two members of SWAG and read out loud at the 2021 March 8 demonstration "Our life our resistance, break the silence break the system" which was attended by over 10.000 people. Together with other sex workers we organised an own sex worker bloc at the demo.

Hello, we are from Sex Worker Action Group. We started organising together to fight the stigma and violence that we face as sex workers.

We stand for sex workers’ rights, for full decriminalisation and body autonomy.

We stand against the patriarchy’s attempts to regulate how marginalised individuals work to survive under capitalism.

This past Wednesday, March 3rd, was International Sex Workers’ Rights Day. On March 3rd, 2001, in West Bengal, India, 25,000 sex workers organised by the Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee sex workers’ collective took to the street.

These workers stood up to the white “false feminism” we see every day, which they observed in the international discussion around sex work.

Feminism without an intersectional understanding of the world is toothless and useless. Feminism that colludes with the state is dangerous and destructive. Feminism that criminalises the ways that people survive under capitalism is indistinguishable from the repressive and patriarchal racial capitalism it claims to fight.

In Germany, sex workers must register with the state, or face fines and punishment if found working without a Prostitute Pass/Certificate. Undercover police are a part of every day life, and yes, they fuck us. Covid 19 safety measures are used as an excuse for greater state surveillance. Migrant, houseless, queer and otherwise historically marginalised workers face the worst of this.

All of this is under the banner of (quote) “protecting prostitutes”. Does this sound like protection to you?

In a system attached and dedicated to criminalisation - perpetuating violence and harm …we must stand together. We must commit to the safety and care of each other. We must stay open, share knowledge, resources and support. We must listen to each others stories. We must learn to live with conflict and in contradiction, to make space for what we do not know. Revolutionary transformation is possible when the energy and will is there.

We stand together for an uncompromisingly intersectional, inclusive feminism. Our feminism – and yours – must actively prioritise black, brown, indigenous and people of colour. Trans and gender-diverse people, functionally diverse people, migrants, and sex workers. We are exhausted by seeing SWERFS offered a platform, making a profit off of violence while partaking in the authoritarian tendencies in our society - all in the name of a false “feminism”.

Now we call on you to stand with us!

When we say WHORE, you say POWER!



Thank you!



This speech was read out at the "My Body is not your Porn" demonstration in Berlin, February 14 2021 and was well received by the ca. 1500 protestors.


I am speaking for the Sex Worker Action Group, a group of sex workers and allies. We fight for sex workers' rights and to make our voices be heard. We started organising together in order to fight the stigma and violence that we face as sex workers and to create an empowering and uplifting community that supports one another. In that spirit, we are glad to see other people who are collectively resisting sexism, patriarchy, exploitation and violence and we wish this would become a norm – that when the principle of consent is being broken and abused, the victim is heard and supported, the perpetrator met with resistance and the community comes closer together.

However, when we first heard of the campaign in 2020 and saw the title „My body is not your porn“, we felt as if we would not be part of that community. That in fact, us sex workers would once again be the ones to blame. Seeing the title „My body is not your porn“ we felt reminded of the many sexworker-exclusionary campaigns that aim to hijack feminism and base their polarising agenda on dividing into „good and bad women“. Too often, politics and identities are built through exlusion, marginalisation and declaring a group of people as „The Other“. Being understanding of the reasoning for this campaign but concerned by the choice of title and where it puts the blame, many of us stayed away and did not feel able to join the protests.

We think that the title „My body is not your porn“ is failling to name sexualised violence as such and derails the conversation around consent by indiscretely throwing things together: porn and sexual violence. Pornography and sex work are not inherently violent and filmed sexual violence is not porn. Pornography is done by consenting adults, who are wanting to be filmed or photographed in order to publish this material and create an income. Before we start filming, we negotiate boundaries and preferences, set the terms for our work and sign contracts and agreements to make sure everyone involved is on the same page and can give informed consent. Is this consent ever broken, we must name it as it is: sexual assault. On the other hand, filming a sexual assault or creating film material without someone's consent, to then publish it and sexualise it for personal profit or as revenge is NOT pornography. To call it that is not just trivialising the violent nature of filmed sexual violence, it is also hurtful and politically dangerous to the sex worker community.

There is a global trend towards the repression, criminalisation and isolation of sex workers and everything that does not fit the heteronormative imagination of marriage, family and sexuality. The agendas behind this dynamic are ideologically driven by the idea that sex work is gender-based violence, therefore all sex workers are victims. Sex workers are being kicked off the internet, losing income necessary for survival within capitalism and the possibility to network, organise and inform each other. Our bank accounts are being frozen as soon as we are outed as sex workers, losing access to our finances and being cut out of the economy. We are being censored, implying that our bodies, work and messages are something to be ashamed of. By saying that society must be protected from pornographic material, lawmakers and NGOs are creating tools of repression, targeting women, migrants, people of colour and members of the LGBTIAQ+ community. We witness how sex workers in Schöneberg's Kurfürsten- and Frobenstr. are being harassed and criminalised by the police, the same police that arrest and deport sex workers and dare to call it a „rescue mission“, while simultaneously leaving actual victims of sexual violence unsupported. These are the consequences of an ideology that frames sex work and pornography as dangerous and inherently violent.

While every individual holds a right to bodily autonomy, some of us actually decided to use their body to create pornography. For us, our body is literally our business. And it is our business alone.

Through building bridges to other groups and movements, working collectively on political projects we realised that the organisers of „My body is not your porn“ are not a bunch of SWERFs but our potential comrades. We hope that a conversation around consent, solidarity and collective struggles will keep growing and that we can find an inclusive language that is powerful in its precise analysis.

We stand in solidarity with everyone targeted by sexism, patriarchal violence, racism,classism, transphobia and whorephobia. We hope that you will stand with us.

Thank you for giving us the chance to speak here today, we appreciate it.



Regarding: SWERF / TERF Alice Schwarzer at Babylon Berlin
on 06.11.2020 7:30pm

On November 6th, 7:30pm, Alice Schwarzer wants to present her autobiography about her life's work at Babylon Berlin.

While Schwarzer made headlines in the 70s fighting for the right to abortions, she makes headlines today for her racist, Islamophobic, transphobic, xenophobic and whorephobic comments. Accordingly, she works together with groups such as Terre des Femmes or Sisters, which match Schwarzer in their racism, transphobia and stigmatisation of sex workers.

Alice Schwarzer's racism and xenophobia

Alice Schwarzer has used the so-called “headscarf debate” as a gimmick and talking point to encourage racist narratives and the rendering of feminism as a white, European or a secular project that systematically leaves out people not matching this narrative living under patriarchy. She has campaigned aggressively for a ban on headscarves, targeting Muslim women*/people wearing headscarves directly. In doing so, Muslim women* are generalised as a monolith, stigmatised, and defined as victims who need to be saved (also against their own will) by “western values”. This is a deeply racist, colonial and incomplete deployment of “feminism” that looks to take away the agency of non-white women* even as it purports to support them. It makes no provision for nuance or humanity.

After the events of New Year's Night 2016 in Cologne Alice Schwarzer complained of misogyny on the part of “foreign” men and NOT of white German men and was applauded by the far-right for this statement.

Muslims, BIPOC and people with a background of migration are continuously experiencing hostility and violence in Europe and Western NATO member states wage in the Middle East and North Africa on the false premise of instilling “democratic values”. People like Schwarzer deflect from this white aggression, which has been ongoing for centuries, instead placing the blame on migrants living in Germany, reducing them to a racist caricature. In doing so she lays the foundations for further racism and white supremacy. In our feminism there is no space for racism and xenophobia. Our feminism is for Muslim women*, BIPOC and migrant women*!

Alice Schwarzer's transphobia

Alice Schwarzer holds on to a biologist and essentialist understanding of sex and gender. Medical procedures like hormones and reassignment surgeries are in her eyes “mutilations” that should not be an option to people. The struggles of trans* people for basic rights and their presence in women*/feminist spaces is perceived by her as a “threat” to women. In her eyes, intersectional queer feminism is the end of women's liberation. According to her there are only two genders: men and women – with the possibility that someone could get “trapped in an identity conflict”. She denies trans people agency over their own bodies and, moreover, refuses to acknowledge the existence of trans people. Has Alice Schwarzer forgotten rallying cries from the fight for accessible abortion or feminist autonomy - „My body, my choice”? Or does she wilfully exclude people not matching her views, partly in order to appeal to a transphobic audience and for her own personal gain? Either way, Alice Schwarzer is a transphobe and misogynist in her statements. They fuel the institutional and social marginalisation of trans people and violence against them. Further, her obsessive and simplified understanding of womanhood as only connected to biology is deeply misogynistic. How could someone who perceives women* only as a sum of their body parts purport to be a feminist?

Alice Schwarzer's whorephobia

Alice Schwarzer has always been an enemy of sex worker's rights and continues to be one today. Just end of September 2020 Schwarzer spoke at the SWERF/TERF-conference “Bündnis Nordisches Modell”, promoting the further criminalisation of sex work. Through carceral, dangerous means such as bans and police repression she wants to achieve “a world without prostitution”. Again, she refuses to recognise the agency of sex workers over their own bodies and the fact that they need to make a living in capitalism. All sex work is exploitation in her eyes, even as she vilifies sex worker organisations that fight for their rights and better conditions as “pimp lobbies”. The event description praises her “courage” in standing up “against pornography and prostitution”. But what is courageous about wanting to further criminalise and marginalise sex workers, refusing to listen to their demands and support them? To encourage police to crack down on them, incarcerate and deport them, fine them, take away business that keeps them alive? Schwarzer's concerns are not about sex workers or their needs, they are solely moralistic and driven by a hate for sex workers and a deep, damaging allegiance to a „feminism“ that is only for white, middle- or upper class, cisgender women. We say: Sex work is work and only rights will fix the wrongs!

Good women vs bad women?

By targeting marginalised people, reproducing stigma and violence, calling for the state to fix injustices by bans and repression and calling that “feminism”, people like Alice Schwarzer hold door open for far-right authoritarians and make it possible to disguise moral fears and oppression as “emancipation”. The state and police are not instruments of liberation, they are its enemies. They rely on a logic of “divide and conquer”, a logic Alice Schwarzer has deeply internalised when imagining the opposition between “the good woman” (usually white, western, middle-class, morally superior) and “the bad woman“ (usually all women objectified as “the other” who is racialised, sexualised or seen as degenerate and morally corrupted).

We stand together for an intersectional, inclusive feminism. In our feminism we have plenty of space for sex workers, trans people, migrant, Muslim and BIPOC women*. We are sick and tired of seeing people like Alice Schwarzer being offered a platform, making a profit off of violence against minorities while partaking in the authoritarian tendencies in our society - all in the name of a false “feminism”.

We therefore would like to organise a protest or action against the event of Alice Schwarzer at Babylon Berlin on November 6 around 7 pm. Get in contact with us and let's show them that there is opposition and resistance!

Sex Worker Action Group (SWAG)



Betreff: Alice Schwarzer im Babylon Berlin am 06.11.2020 19:30pm

Am 6. November um 19:30 möchte Alice Schwarzer ihre Autobiografie über ihr „Lebenswerk“ im Babylon Berlin vorstellen.

Während Schwarzer in den 70ern im Kampf für Abtreibungsrechte Schlagzeilen machte, tut sie sich heute überwiegend durch rassistische, islamophobe, transphobe, xenophobe und hurenfeindliche Kommentare hervor. Sie arbeitet mit entsprechenden Gruppen wie Terre des Femmes oder Sisters zusammen, welche Schwarzer in ihrem Rassismus, Transphobie und der Stigmatisierung von Sexarbeitenden in Nichts nachstehen.

Alice Schwarzers Rassismus und Xenophobie

Alice Schwarzer nutzt immer wieder die sogenannte „Kopftuchdebatte“ als Aufhänger und Gesprächspunkt für rassistische Narrative und die Darstellung, Feminismus sei ein weißes, europäisches oder säkulares Projekt, welches Menschen, die diesem Narrativ nicht entsprechen und dennoch im Patriarchat leben, systematisch ausschließt. Sie betreibt aggressive Kampagnen für ein Verbot muslimischer Kopftücher und greift direkt Muslima an. Indem sie dies tut, werden muslimische Frauen* als eine Einheit verallgemeinert, stigmatisiert und zu Opfern erklärt, welche (auch gegen den eigenen Willen) durch „westliche Werte“ gerettet werden müssten. Dies ist eine zutiefst rassistische, koloniale und unvollständige Darstellung eines „Feminismus“, welcher nicht-weißen Frauen* das Selbstbestimmungsrecht vorenthält während dreist behauptet wird, diese zu unterstützen. Es entbehrt jeglicher Nuance und Menschlichkeit.

Nach den Ereignissen der Neujahrsnacht 2016 in Köln verortete Alice Schwarzer Frauenfeindlichkeit lediglich bei „fremden“ Männern und NICHT bei weißen, deutschen Männern, wofür sie Applaus aus der rechten Ecke erntete. Muslime/Muslima, BIPOC und Menschen mit Migrationshintergrund erfahren in Europa kontinuierlich Ablehnung und Gewalt und westliche NATO-Staaten führen Kriege im Nahen Osten und Nordafrika unter dem Vorwand „demokratische Werte“ durchzusetzen. Personen wie Alice Schwarzer lenken von diesen Jahrhunderte andauernden Aggressionen weißer Menschen und Gesellschaften ab und stellen Migrant*innen in Deutschland als Sündenbock und rassistische Karikatur dar. Damit bietet sie eine Grundlage für weiteren Rassismus und White Supremacy (die Ideologie der Überlegenheit und Vorherrschaft von Weißen).

In unserem Feminismus ist kein Platz für Rassismus und Xenophobie. Unser Feminismus ist auch für Muslima, BIPOC und migrantische Frauen*!

Alice Schwarzers Transphobie

Alice Schwarzer hält an einem veralteten, biologistischen und vereinfachtem Verständnis von Geschlecht fest. Medizinische Eingriffe wie Hormone oder geschlechtsangleichende Operationen sind in ihren Augen „Verstümmelungen“, welche für Betroffene keine Option sein sollen. Die Kämpfe von Trans*Menschen für grundlegende Rechte und ihre Anwesenheit in feministischen Frauen*räumen wertet sie als „Gefahr“ für (Cis-)Frauen. In ihren Augen ist ein intersektioneller, queerer Feminismus das Ende der Frauen*befreiung. Ihrer Ansicht nach gibt es nur zwei Geschlechter: Männer und Frauen – mit der Möglichkeit dass jemand dazwischen „in einem Identitätskonflikt gefangen“ sein könnte. Sie verweigert Trans*Menschen das Recht über den eigenen Körper entscheiden zu können und weigert sich darüber hinaus, die Existenz von Trans*Menschen als solche anzuerkennen. Hat Alice Schwarzer die Parolen der Bewegungen für Zugang zu Abtreibungen oder feministischer Autonomie wie bspw. „Mein Körper, meine Entscheidung.“ bereits vergessen? Oder grenzt sie gewollt Menschen aus, die nicht ihrer Anschauung passen, teils um einem transphoben Publikum zu gefallen, teils für den eigenen persönlichen Antrieb? Wie dem auch sei, Alice Schwarzer ist transphob und frauen*feindlich in ihren Aussagen. Sie befeuern die institutionelle und gesellschaftliche Ausgrenzung von und Gewalt gegen Trans*Menschen. Darüber hinaus ist ihr obsessives und vereinfachtes Verständnis von Frauen* als lediglich durch die Biologie bestimmt zutiefst frauenfeindlich. Wie kann jemand, die Frauen* als Summe ihrer Körperteile betrachtet, vorgeben Feministin zu sein?

Alice Schwarzers Hurenfeindlichkeit

Alice Schwarzer war schon immer eine Gegnerin der Rechte von Sexarbeitenden und sie bleibt es noch heute. Erst Ende September 2020 hielt sie eine Rede bei der SWERF/TERF-Konferenz „Bündnis Nordisches Modell“ in Bonn (SWERF / TERF = Sex Worker / Trans auschließender radikaler Feminismus, wobei nichts radikal oder feministisch an dieser Ideologie ist). Dabei bewarb sie die weitere Kriminalisierung von Sexarbeit. Durch repressive, gefährliche Mittel wie Verbote und Polizeigewalt möchte sie „eine Welt ohne Prostitution“ herbeiführen. Wieder einmal verweigert sie sich die Selbstbestimmung von Sexarbeitenden über den eigenen Körper sowie den Überlebenskampf im Kapitalismus anzuerkennen. Alle Sexarbeit ist in ihren Augen Ausbeutung und dennoch verunglimpft sie die Organisationen von Sexarbeitenden, in welchen diese sich für bessere Bedingungen und eigene Rechte einsetzen, als „Zuhälterlobby“. Die Beschreibung der Veranstaltung im Babylon huldigt ihr „Engagement gegen Pornografie und Prostitution“, doch was genau ist so engagiert daran die weitere Kriminalisierung und Ausgrenzung von Sexarbeitenden zu fordern und sich zu weigern, diesen zuzuhören und Unterstützung anzubieten? Die Polizei zu bekräftigen Sexarbeitende festzunehmen, einzusperren, mit Bußgeldern zu überziehen, abzuschieben oder lebensnotwendiges Einkommen zu entreißen? Schwarzers Sorgen drehen sich nicht um das Wohlergehen von Sexarbeitenden oder deren Bedürfnisse, sie sind ausschließlich moralistisch und motiviert von einem Hass für Sexarbeitende und einer tiefen Loyalität gegenüber einem „Feminismus“ welcher nur für weiße Cis-Frauen der Mittel- und Oberschicht existiert.

Wir sagen: Sexarbeit ist Arbeit und nur Rechte werden die Fehler beheben!

Gute Frauen vs. Schlechte Frauen?

Durch Angriffe auf marginalisierte Menschen, die Reproduktion von Stigma und Gewalt, die Forderung dass der Staat Ungerechtigkeiten mittels Verbote und Repression beseitigt und dies alles „Feminismus“ zu nennen, halten Menschen wie Alice Schwarzer rechten Autoritären die Tür offen und machen es möglich, Moralpanik und Unterdrückung als „Emanzipation“ zu verkleiden. Der Staat und die Polizei sind keine Instrumente der Befreiung, sie sind ihr Gegner. Sie berufen sich auf eine Logik des „teile und herrsche“, eine Logik die Alice Schwarzer zutiefst verinnerlicht hat, imaginiert sie doch den Gegensatz „gute Frau“ (überwiegend weiß, westlich, mittelständig, moralisch überlegen) und „schlechte Frau“ (für gewöhnlich alle Frauen* die als „anders“ dargestellt werden, welche rassifiziert und sexualisiert werden oder welche als degeneriert und moralisch korrupt dargestellt werden.

Wir stehen gemeinsam ein für einen intersektionellen, inklusiven Feminismus. In unserem Feminismus haben wir reichlich Platz für Sexarbeitende, Trans*Menschen, Migrant*innen, Muslima/Muslime und BIPOC Frauen*. Wir sind angewidert und müde, dass wir immer wieder mit ansehen müssen wie Menschen wie Alice Schwarzer eine Plattform geboten wird, wie sie Gewalt gegen Minderheiten zu Profit machen, während sie an autoritären Tendenzen in unserer Gesellschaft aktiv teilhaben – alles im Namen eines falschen „Feminismus“.

Deshalb würden wir gerne einen Protest oder eine Aktion gegen die Veranstaltung von Alice Schwarzer im Babylon Berlin am 6.11. gegen 19 Uhr organisieren. Nimmt mit uns Kontakt auf und lasst uns gemeinsam zeigen, dass es gegen dieses Event Opposition und Widerstand gibt!

Sex Worker Action Group (SWAG)



Sex Worker Action Group (SWAG)

SWAG (Sex Worker Action Group) is a group of sex workers and supporters in Berlin. We are independent and non-hierarchically organised - in order to create concrete events and actions. We see ourselves as part of the sex worker's rights movement and aim to network with other movements and groups. Our goal is the end of criminalisation, stigma and harm of sex workers and the creation of a community in which everyone can thrive.

WhatsApp Image 2020-05-22 at
WhatsApp Image 2020-05-22 at
WhatsApp Image 2020-08-02 at
WhatsApp Image 2020-07-23 at
WhatsApp Image 2020-07-23 at 18.29.43 (1
WhatsApp Image 2020-07-22 at
WhatsApp Image 2020-08-02 at 13.35.30 (1
WhatsApp Image 2020-08-02 at
WhatsApp Image 2020-08-02 at 13.35.29 (1
WhatsApp Image 2020-08-02 at



Version: OpenPGP.js v4.10.7


  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram

©2020 by Sex Work Action Week. Proudly created with

This site was designed with the
website builder. Create your website today.
Start Now