Gabriela Leite, the founder of the movement for sex worker rights in Brazil, died yesterday October 10, 2013. She was instrumental in struggles for prostitution to be recognized as a profession in Brazil, she showed us how HIV/AIDS work could be done to defend the rights and citizenship of sex workers, and she challenged US restrictions on global HIV/AIDS funding that discriminate against sex workers. She was a well-known and renowned public figure who did not shy away from having been a sex worker. In fact she ran for federal office on a platform for the rights of prostitutes, gays, and access to abortion.
Tributes to her life are planned for October 12, 2013 in the Catumbi Cemetery Chapel, Rio de Janeiro with the funeral at 8.30 am and burial at 9.30 am. Friends and family organizing these events write that, “Gabriela Leite inaugurated a new way of being and doing politics… Gabriela was magnetic, unforgettable, charismatic, charming, elegant, fragrant, showy, libertarian, fearless, bold, stylish, friendly, generous, combative, cheerful, a warrior, a gift, unique, a partner, an advisor, persistent, inspiring … a muse!”
Era uma mulher! Era uma puta! Era uma puta mulher! Pura vida! Da vida!