Red Light Night June 10th 2007

Red Light Night was a success!

We would like to thank GoodHandys for hosting and their help with the organization of Red Light Night. SPOC also thanks MP Libby Davies for flying in. Her speak was eloquent and that girl knows how to work a room! Many thanks too the Saucy tarts for turning the room into a Dawson city saloon.

SPOC is also appreciative to lawyer Allan Young for speaking and the entire legal team. She-male sex-pot Mandy GoodHandys was a wonderful hostess. DJ Nick Red played hot music. And also thanks to Chris our gracious doorman.

SPOC will keep you posted on further Red Light Nights at GoodHandys.

On Sunday June 10th, Goodhandy’s nightclub and Sex Professionals of Canada (SPOC), are launching “Red Light Night”, a social night for sex workers, their friends and supporters.

Doors open at 9pm, and can-can burlesque troupe the Saucy Tarts will be performing shortly after 10pm. Dancing with DJ Nik Red will follow. Shemale entertainer and comic Mandy Goodhandy will host.

NDP House Leader and Vancouver East MP Libby Davies and Osgoode Hall law professor Allan Young will be delivering opening remarks at 10pm, as Red Light Night is a fundraiser supporting a constitutional challenge to Canada’s prostitution laws.

SPOC, a sex workers’ advocacy group, is challenging three provisions of the Criminal Code related to Canada’s solicitation laws. The group had its first hearing at the Ontario Superior Court last week. “If this court challenge is successful, it will not only save lives, but it will dramatically improve the quality of our working conditions,” says Amy Lebovitch, executive director of SPOC. The goal of SPOC and others involved in this court case is the full decriminalization of prostitution.

This challenge is particularly important to Ms. Davies’ riding of Vancouver East, where Robert Pickton faces criminal charges for the deaths of 22 sex workers, the largest murder case in Canadian history. Ms. Davies says “We must keep the pressure on all levels of government to make changes to protect the rights and safety of individuals working in the sex trade."

The legal challenge is led by Prof. Allan Young. "Bringing this case is of utmost importance because despite the fact that prostitution is a legal occupation, the current Criminal Code provisions operate to deny sex workers safe legal options for conducting their legal business,” says Prof. Young. “The law must protect the vulnerable and not expose Canadians to the risk of preventable violence. Ultimately, this fight is destined to go all the way to the Supreme Court, and without additional funds the modest amount of disbursement funding provided by Legal Aid will run out quickly." Prof. Young, together with several other lawyers and law student volunteers, are providing their services pro bono in support of this cause.

Goodhandy’s co-owner Mandy Goodhandy is delighted that Red Light Night can benefit this legal challenge. “We are trying to create a safe space for sex workers to socialize, network and let their hair down. Our mandate with Goodhandy’s is to create a community of trans folk, queers and sex-positive people. We’re pro-porn, pro-sex worker and we embrace all forms of gender expression and sexual identities.”

Ms. Goodhandy opened Goodhandy’s in May 2006 with her business partner Todd Klinck, a former sex worker and who wrote a sex trade-themed column for popular Toronto gay magazine fab, and who regularly appears on the Showcase program Kink. Goodhandy’s holds regular theme nights devoted to gay men, transsexual women, queer women and transsexual men, and one extremely mixed night on Saturdays.
  
Red Light Night is likely to become a monthly event, and is expected to attract a wide variety of sex workers of all genders as well as supporters and friends.

All proceeds from the door will go towards the legal fund. The event is pay-what-you-can, with a suggested donation of $10.

Goodhandy’s is located at 120 Church Street , 2nd Floor, just south of Richmond Street , on the west side of Church. Doors open at 9pm, and the show will begin at 10pm.

Media enquiries can be made to Todd Klinck, at info@mayhemnorth.com or 416-706-4237

SOME ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Sex Professionals of Canada (SPOC)
SPOC is a sex worker activist group devoted to furthering the business and employment rights of sex work. Like virtually every other sex worker led group worldwide, SPOC advocates full decriminalization of prostitution.
Media enquiries can be made to Amy Lebovitch, at amy@spoc.ca or 416-519-1456

The Court Challenge

SPOC is seeking the constitutional invalidation of s.210 (bawdy house), s.212(1)(j) (living on the avails) and s.213(1)(c) (communicating for the purpose of prostitution) of the Criminal Code and they are arguing that these laws deprive them of their right to liberty and security in a manner that is not in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice. For more information visit www.spoc.ca