Feminist campaigners are being accused of secretly filming dancers in legal strip clubs in a bid to try and shut them down.
United Voices of the World, the strippers’ union, have condemned activists of the Women’s Equality Party who have said they will put other women out of work and deprive them of their livelihood if they succeed at shutting down regulated clubs.
The union said there have been a number of misguided attempts at rescuing them from sexual exploitation by sending in pretend male punters to film practices that may involve nudity and invade their privacy.
United Voices of the World trade representative Shiri Shalmy told talkRADIO’s Matthew Wright: “They have been filmed in a safe place, they’re not supposed to be filmed there and we know that now someone is holding footage of some of our members and strippers across the country, probably naked and they won’t give it back.
“The strippers would argue as feminists themselves they would expect to be asked for their own opinion; these are jobs that they have chosen.
“People come to see a performance, they don’t come to participate in a sexual act as they will go somewhere else for that and we know when legal places are closed this is also where women would go.”
Ms Shalmy added that closing down safe strip clubs with CCTV and more than adequate protection would push women towards un-regulated ones and further into jobs that are more risky and much less safe.
Sassy, a stripper who is using the profession to fund a law degree also told Matthew Wright: “I’ve been dancing for ten years and I’ve really enjoyed it, I work in an excellent job and I’ve travelled the world with them.
“I don’t understand why people are trying to judge me for my life choices and take away my livelihood, especially at a time when I’m funding my education and I’m going to be able to go out and help so many other women and people in the future.
“I am a massive feminist I’ve been blogging about the industry for ten years I’ve seen networks open up all over the world for people who are dancers, into burlesque or pole dancing and who feel that showing off their body whether for fitness money or as an empowering thing for them to do is positive.
Words by Wesley Hudson