Kamylla’s Legal Fund
We recently became aware of a situation in Texas, about a sex worker named Kamylla, who was part of the A&E Show “8 Minutes” (which we condemned back in April). She was portrayed on the show as a sex worker in need of a new life, and that was true, and is even truer now, than before the TV show came into her life.
Kamylla found herself in a desperate situation: struggling with health issues and unable to find work, her bills were piling up and she was facing eviction. Desperate, after applying for job after job, she put up an ad to be a sex worker. She said, “I never imagined I would be in such a situation. But I did it for my family. Every night I cried in conflict over it. I did what I had to do to take care so that my family wouldn’t be homeless.”
Later, she received a call from the production staff of the “8 Minutes” show, and after several discussions, and a promise of help, Kamylla agreed to be on the show. She was desperate to change her situation and she believed this was her family’s way out, especially after being assured, repeatedly, that they would receieve the help they needed and not lose their home. So, in spite of the fear of exposing herself as a sex worker, in spite of some doubts about the show, she put her faith in the offer of help that was extended to her. In the end, she didn’t receive any help from the show. All of the promised resources disappeared. She was paid only $200 and encouraged to turn in other sex workers for extra money. She refused.
When no help came through, and their situation became dire, she ended up putting out another ad to try and keep her family in their home. She was arrested for prostitution. What few possessions the family had left were sold to bail her out, and two of her children were sent to a relative because of the housing situation, which has now been compounded by the flooding in Texas. With a prostitution charge over her head, trying to find traditional work has become impossible, and because Kamylla is here on a Visa, she is in danger of deportation and being permanently separated from her children. There is a lawyer willing to help her case, and The Cupcake Girls have already paid the retainer fee, but we need additional help to cover the rest of her legal fees, which total $5,000.
Kamylla needed assistance and intervention, and she needed it by an organization that believes in her worth and ability to make survival choices. She was treated as if she was a character in a fiction piece, but this wasn’t fiction; this was her actual life. Her livelihood and family situation were all compromised by promises of a new life. She identified as desiring change for herself and family, but the resources promised were not provided, and that’s why we are stepping in to help. We can give her resources that address her situation and will be the next steps to the life she envisioned.
No organization can save or change someone, because the desire for change comes from within, yet Kamylla proclaimed the need for help, and the call went unanswered. We want Kamylla to know we support her, we validate her experiences, and we validate her inherent worth and her desire for a different life. We say you are worth it, you are valued, we believe you.
Won’t you join us by putting our mission into action? We need your help!