bill of portland

edit: (nov 11) I’m no longer trying to rent my space on air bnb. I’m actually now trying to find a room to rent from January - April in Maine! Thanks lovelies! 😘

Portland sex workers: anti-sex work legislation alert

I have a social worker friend who was sitting in on a CSEC meeting this week (child sexual exploitation committee) and she said

Sitting in the CSEC steering committee and someone just went over legislative updates. Some of the stuff you sent me to read was about how anyone who ever takes money from a sex worker can be charged with trafficking. Even family, landlords, etc.
It sounds like there is a bill being proposed this legislative session that would expand that to “exchange of goods and services” in addition to just money. It’s intended to catch taxi drivers, bouncers, things like that. I didn’t catch the name… something like “legislative concept 70”? It’s going to be given a HB # soon. Didn’t know if you were aware or would like to know or not.“

She just added this:

I did get more info that it is called legislative concept 33 "expansion of promoting prostitution statute” and the chief sponsors are rep Taylor and rep Huffman and it will be posted Wednesday. It’s meant to modify ORS 167.012… he showed me a bullet point “C” that was going to change from “an exchange of money” to “an exchange of money or goods and services”

I don’t know whether you all remember my post of notes from the trafficking forum that’s in the winter zine, but this statute is ALREADY being using in racial profile and against working class/lower income people of all ethnicities.
It doesn’t just arrest sex workers.

It targets their friends, family, landlords, cab drivers, tattoo artists–anyone who accepts money from them but is local (obviously the phone companies aren’t being targeted, nor are internet providers).

It has already helped to allow one murder when a local sex worker’s safety call was too afraid of being arrested to call the police, even though the worker hadn’t made her after-session check in call.

It forces sex workers deeper into isolation since it doesn’t allow us access to protective screening or security measures without jeopardizing the safety and freedom of those around us, and it brands anyone we share a home with or loan money to or pay as “our traffickers” regardless of the reality that many of us support family and loved ones and often friends, through love and freely given aid, not coercion. It even makes our SAFETY measures our traffickers, like Ashley Benson’s mom.

And, as we have seen so often before and most recently with the new measures to “teach” air hosts and motel owners about “trafficking”, these measures are overwhelmingly used as tools for racial profiling against vulnerable people of colour.

This week a fifteen year old girl, a survivor f trafficking, was given nine years in prison for being trafficked.

These laws aren’t about saving or rescuing any vulnerable people.

They’re about increasing law enforcement and ngo power, funding, and prestige, all at the expense of our most vulnerable populations, while vulnerable and exploited people (including trafficking survivors) remain subject to incarceration and the further loss of their freedom and futures, forcing them into a reality where sex work has become their only viable option when they get out.

Please spread the news of this bill and help SWOP, STROLL, and the Portland CIO fight this racist and damaging bill.

10

“PDX cell checking in, ma’am. I’ve made contact with the locals, and am pleased to announce that they have no goddamn clue we’re even here. Rubbed shoulders with some of our allies, did a little recruiting, too. I like to think I represented the Labyrinth with style. Now I’m gonna have myself one of these fuckin’ awesome local beers while I’m awaiting further instructions.”

***

So, A bunch of us nerds made it to Rose City Comic Con in Portland, OR on the 19th and 20th of September, and this was my day 2 costume: Illuminati. Coat was hand sewn, gloves were painted, everything else was bought or thrifted. Hat is by Fez-O-Rama.

Thanks to @deathgrip-photography for the photos! I know you had a hell of a time with the lighting! I hope to get more pics with this outfit in an industrial portion of the city one of these days. 

Also: hey @scrivnomancer !  If you ever wanted to see what became of that sewing project…

5

John Helmer Haberdasher in Portland

I found myself puttering around downtown Portland on a recent morning, and decided to type “menswear” into my phone and see what came up. Luckily enough for me, the answer was John Helmer Haberdarsher.

Helmer is the kind of old-school men’s clothing store you find in the downtown of most major cities. It’s been on the same location for nearly a century, its ownership is in the hands of its third John Helmer, and the staff are a mix of young guys in bow ties, old guys in bow ties, and women who would wear bow ties if that were a reasonable and tasteful option.

Walk into Helmer and you’ll find the right half of the store taken up by hats of every shape and size. Sadly, it’s tough to find a really fine hat these days at retail, and the best of these was only fine, but there truly was a selection to beat the band. After putting on and taking off a summer hat by the German brand Mayser about a dozen times, I resolved to buy it. I recently cut my hair quite short and the sun in Los Angeles is unforgiving.

On the left-hand side of the store was traditional haberdashery fare. Rep ties, Southwick sportcoats, and a clerk helping a customer with a custom order of Bill’s Khakis. Behind glass was a beautiful selection of Alden shoes - I had to restrain myself from trying on a pair of shell cordovan plain-toed bluchers.

The service at the shop was uniformly excellent - you could tell that this was what these folks do, not just a summer job. The styling was uniformly, well, dad-ish. Maybe grandpa-ish… but if you expected something different perhaps you thought you were down the street at the high-end department store Mario’s. John Helmer Haberdasher offers a comfortable place to shop for traditional clothes, and next time I’m in Portland, I’ll pop in again.