“Making sex work criminal does not stop it from happening and only puts sex workers in danger. Too many middle class commentators in broadsheet newspapers continue to ignore the voices of sex workers and call for a ban on sex work. This has to stop. Sex workers, like trans people, are one of the most silenced groups in society. We do not hear their voices. I want them to know that they are valuable, that they are not wrong, or dirty, and that I care about them.”
Paris Lees has been described as “the voice of a generation” by i-D magazine. Her work can be found everywhere from the Daily Telegraph to the Guardian and she is the first and, so far, only trans person to appear on the BBC’s flagship discussion programme Question Time.
She is the first trans woman to present for BBC Radio 1 and Channel 4 and has won various awards, including Ultimate Trailblazer at the Cosmopolitan Ultimate Women of the Year Awards in 2014. She co-founded All About Trans in 2011, a project to connect trans people with the media that lead to BBC2 comedy Boy Meets Girl and Eastenders’ first trans character. In recognition, the Independent on Sunday named her the most influential lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender person in Britain in 2013. Her memoir is published next year by Penguin.