Strip Down, Rise Up

A group of protesters pose with their signs during a nighttime strike
On the picket line with dancers in North Hollywood

By Jean Chen Ho

Photos By Nichelle Dailey

On a balmy Friday night in September, I left a friend’s dumplings and mahjong party to report on the scene at Star Garden, a topless dive bar in North Hollywood. Star Garden’s fed-up dancers had walked off the job last March over unsafe working conditions, and they’d been on strike ever since. Every weekend, they picketed in front the club. The dancers are pursuing unionization — if successful, their campaign will only be the second instance of sex workers winning union representation in the history of U.S. labor.

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