On December 17, 2003 the first International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers was observed in Washington. Started by Dr. Annie Sprinkle and the Sex Worker's Outreach Project USA as a vigil in response to the Green River Killer in Seattle. More than 70 women were murdered from 1982 to 1998.
During the week of December 17, sex worker's rights groups stage events, vigils and raise awareness about the need to decriminalize/legitimize sex work. The red umbrella has become a symbol synonymous with the day.
For more information go to http://www.swopusa.org/dec17/
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