By Raven Bowen


Q: So, what do you do?
A: I’m a sex worker and sex workers’ rights campaigner, board member with Sex Workers Alliance Ireland (SWAI), student and proud mammy. 

Q: And your favourite colour?
Blue, there’s something very soothing about it as a colour and I think royal blue is very smart. 

Q: What are you most proud of?
Leading the High Court battle in Northern Ireland against the Nordic model and developing amazing allies along the way. 

Q: What drew you to sex industry related work?
 I was in university many, many years ago and found myself drowning in debt. I started working in a local massage parlour at weekends and although I’ve left the industry several times, it always called me back. There’s an old saying – “escorts never really retire, they just take long holidays.”

Q: The last thing you laughed about?’
A: I was out with friends in Belfast last night and we were in stitches recalling a man in a bar who asked in all seriousness, “why are all socialist women fat?” Good grief! 

Q: What’s your favourite food?
A: Steak and chips, with béarnaise sauce, mushrooms and onion rings. 

Q: Your current project or pursuit?
We’re just getting ready for battle in the High Court with dates for the full hearing coming soon, so that’s keeping me busy, plus I’m studying and touring too. 

Q: What’s your biggest regret?
I really regret not being smarter with money when I was younger and saving for the future, but then, I don’t think many 20-year-olds do that anyway. 

Q: Facebook or Twitter?
Twitter definitely! It’s the fastest way to keep up with new developments and I love that I can chat to other sex workers around the world too. 

Q: What challenges you the most about your sex work or related work?
We support a lot of sex workers at SWAI and the rate of violence in Ireland has soared since the introduction of the Nordic model there. So when I’m talking to a sex worker in distress, I sometimes feel very, very angry. 

Q: Favourite Movie?
: The Assassin with Bridget Fonda. 

Q: And the last time you cried?
A: SuperVet. Watching people saying goodbye to their beloved pets just ENDS me. 

Q: Cat or dog person?
A: Both. I would dearly love a dog but it just wouldn’t be fair because I’m away so much. Right now I have two moggies and they’re brill. 

Q: Who understands you?
My closest friends and my family. My partner is ace too, even when I’m stomping around.

Q: What’s the last book or article you read?
I read a satirical childhood book on how things work, entitled “How it Works: The Mum.” It’s very funny. 

Q: Childhood Fear?
Electricity and mice and rats! I tried to fix the latter by adopting hamsters but it didn’t work.

Q: What did your last text message say?
“LOL. Oh dear. Now I really can’t wait.” I was talking to a SWAI colleague who says their karaoke skills are on a par with a cat who has just trapped their tail in the fridge door. 

Q: One thing that your work or existence is aimed to do for the sex industry?
A: To fight for decrim and to get out there and speak to as many people as possible to bust common myths and reduce stigma. 

Q: The meaning of life in one word?
A: Love. 

Q: What do you want to be when you grow up?
I wanted to be a lawyer at first, I also wanted to be a singer, but doing weddings and funerals for friends was the closest I came to that dream. 

Q: Three portable items that you would have with you while stranded on a desert island?
 Hmmmm, tough one. Is there WiFi? Probably not.
1) A fishing net;
2) large knife; and
3) a very large white fermentation bucket so I can make wine!

**Laura was very busy with activism work so we were unable to arrange an interview in time but she kindly provided written responses to the 21 Q’s while commuting. 

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