July 14, 2022
Arielle Egozi, a branding and creative consultant, added her experience as a sex worker to her resume on LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional networking site. This addition did not go unnoticed and sparked debates and news articles around the world. Egozi listed just a few simple words: “Sex Work, Self Employed, September 2020 - Present” in between other professional roles. The responses to this were mixed — some hailed her bravery and candor, some used her post as an opportunity to debate the “morality” of sex work, while others stated that they value the business and negotation skills a sex worker likely has and would find her experience to be an asset in almost any setting.
DSW applauds Egozi for taking this step to normalize sex work and to destigmatize it. Many individuals are unable to disclose their involvement in sex work due to fear of ostracization from their families or other communties and loss of other forms of income. Egozi’s post also serves to reiterate that sex workers are not a monolith, nor are they separate or different. Sex work is a form of work that all sorts of people choose to engage in for various reasons and their choice should not be criminalized or denigrated by others.
Here’s what Egozi had to say about the reaction to her post:
i left an in-house job with fancy benefits two weeks ago and the reason i could do that was sex work.
i had just enough saved from selling and engaging my image that i could ask myself if i was happy. i wasn’t.
yeah, the few grand i’d stashed up over time helped, but the biggest reason i could walk away is because sex work shows me what my power can do when i own it intentionally.
i charge exorbitant amounts.
i have no problem taking rejections from those that don’t want to pay it, because i charge what emotional labor is required right into the fee.
i set and hold boundaries, and engage only in ways that are safe, playful, and abundant for me. i don’t waste my time with anything less.
i stopped pitching and negotiating. i have nothing to prove. i’ve done the work up front to make my value evident.
why is this different than any other client work?
the answer i come to, again and again, is that it isn’t.
so it's now up on my linkedin.
because not only is my new standard for incoming creative clients that they be at least half as respectful, generous, and grateful as the John Does online —
but that anyone who i partner with celebrates and accepts every experience as one i will inevitably bring with me into a project.
they don’t have to understand it, but they better respect the hell out of it.