NCSF on TwitterSubscribe to the NCSF RSS FeedNCSF Blog

NCSF Headlines

NCSF News

Naughty in N’awlins names Grand Marshals for Sexual Freedom Parade 2017

on Thursday, 22 June 2017. Posted in Front Page Headline, NCSF News

Set to take place at 6pm, on July 5, 2017 in New Orleans, the Sexual Freedom Parade brings awareness to the current fight for sexual freedom issues: from discrimination to custody issues, as well as archaic laws outlawing sex toys, non-monogamy, and sex work. The Sexual Freedom Parade is sponsored by the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom (NCSF), which is committed to creating a political, legal and social environment in the U.S. that advances equal rights for consenting adults who engage in alternative sexual and relationship expressions.

 

This year’s Sexual Freedom Parade will be the largest in the U.S. with more than 1,000 participants, a Brass Band, floats and dance troupes. The route will start on Iberville, behind the Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel and then head south before turning left on Chartres St. The parade will then take a left onto St. Louis and then a right onto Bourbon St. After marching for four blocks on Bourbon St, the parade will turn right on St. Ann and then again on Royal St. before heading back to the Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel for a Sexual Freedom Party. 

 

Everyone is encouraged to wear all white!

 

Bob Hannaford, organizer of the annual Naughty in N’awlins convention, is pleased to announce the following list of Grand Marshals that will ride on different floats in the Sexual Freedom Parade. “It is an honor to have such a diverse and inspiring list of leaders in the sex positive community come together to support this historic parade,” said Hannaford.

 

Sexual Freedom Parade Marshals

 

Keira Harris: Volunteer Director, National Coalition for Sexual Freedom. “In an ideal world, I would not be afraid to show affection to both of my partners in public, my husband’s girlfriend would be able to get the same insurance benefits that I get, and my way of life would be normalized to the point that I wouldn’t require a kink aware professionals database to find an understanding and unbiased professional for services I need,” says Harris.

 

John & Jackie Melfi: Bloggers from OpenLove101.com and authors of the book “The Swinging Lifestyle: Questions You Are Afraid to Ask”. Their blog covers a variety of issues facing non-monogamous couples in today’s society and answers questions that people might have about the relationship model. They also own Colette, the largest chain of swinger’s clubs in the US.

 

Dr. Zhana Vrangalova: A NYC-based sex researcher, writer, and educator with a PhD in Developmental Psychology from Cornell University, where she studied how different aspects of sexuality (especially casual sex/promiscuity and mostly heterosexuality) are linked to health and well-being. She is currently an adjunct professor at the NYU Psychology department where she teaches Human Sexuality.

 

Kenneth Play: An international sex hacking expert/educator, former top fitness professional, and private celebrity fitness and sex-ed coach. He co-founded the globally-recognized intentional sex-positive community, Hacienda Villa; he teamed up with Dr. Zhana Vrangalova to work on The Casual Sex Project; he’s been a featured presenter for the Sexual Health Expo (SHE) and New York University; and his projects have been featured in GQ, Vice, Elite Daily, Thrillist, Refinery 29, Playboy, and Cosmopolitan. His mission is to bring hands-on sex education accessible to a mainstream audience. 

 

Holli & Michael: This dynamic couple has starred on Playboy’s hit show “Swing”, they have a daily radio show on Playboy Radio and they own a club in Las Vegas called Sensual that caters to open couples. They speak about Consensual Non-Monogamous Relationships at conferences and conventions around the world and coined the word "LivingSexy" as well as the phrase: "a secure me creates a strong we."

 

All of the Grand Marshalls are available for interviews, along with Bob Hannaford, organizer of Naughty in N’awlins, the largest alternative lifestyle convention for couples in the world. With over 1,000 couples, this event is a full takeover of one of the French Quarter's biggest hotels. There are workshops, seminars, private Bourbon St Parties, industry entertainment and nightly erotic theme balls.

Join Center for Sex Positive Sexuality and NCSF in celebrating their Anniversaries!

on Tuesday, 06 June 2017. Posted in NCSF News

The Center for Sex Positive Sexuality is celebrating their 10th Anniversary along with NCSF's 20th Anniversary on July 15th! You don't have to attend to support both organizations.

40% of funds going to this party will be donated to NCSF. Remaining funds will go directly towards Center for Positive Sexuality's program funding (unless you choose otherwise).

This event will include dinner, open bar, and non-alcoholic beverages. Entertainment will be provided as well. Look forward to live performances by some of our very talented volunteers, an awards ceremony, raffle, and a roast of the Executive Director.

Evening casual dress preferred.

Los Angeles, CA: Event address will be provided upon purchase of tickets.

Participate in a survey about polyamorous relationships!

on Saturday, 15 April 2017. Posted in NCSF News

If you are in a polyamorous or other type of consensually non-monogamous, where all parties involved understand and agree that complete monogamy is not required, then you know how important it is that people understand what these relationships are and how they work.

 

My name is Ryan Witherspoon and I am a clinical psychology Ph.D. student at the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University.  I am conducting a dissertation research project investigating these kinds of relationships.  Specifically, I’m looking at hidden sources of strength and resilience against challenges that polyamory and other types of consensual non-monogamy may feature. 

 

Are you a US resident, over 18, and currently in one or more polyamorous or consensually non-monogamous relationship(s)?  Do you want to help contribute to scientific understanding of these important lifestyles and practices?  Please click the link below to participate in this ground-breaking study!  

 

All responses are anonymous and completely confidential.  The survey will only take about 20 minutes to complete, but your contribution to expanding knowledge and tolerance of these modern relationships will be priceless! 

 

Access the brief survey here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CNMstudy

 

Please feel free to contact me with any questions, comments or concerns! 

 

Sincerely Yours,

Ryan G. Witherspoon, MA

Guest Blog: “Signs” of Trafficking to Make You Wonder

on Monday, 10 April 2017. Posted in NCSF News

by Desmond Ravenstone

Last weekend, I flew out of town to attend a conference where the annual meeting of the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom was being held, having been invited to co-present on sex workers’ rights for the Coalition’s leaders. I took just a small backpack crammed with clothes, papers, and other items. The room was paid for by another NCSF activist, who was staying in a suite with their partner. As is my usual practice, I kept the “Do Not Disturb” sign on the entire time, as well as leaving the TV on, because I’m one of these folks who is more comfortable with an unmade bed than having others go through my things.

Believe it or not, I might have been tagged by a hotel employee as a possible sex trafficker.

“Huh!? What did you do wrong?” Well, according to a checklist provided to hotel employees by the Department of Homeland Security, I displayed at least three “general indicators” of human trafficking:

Few or no personal items when checking in.

The same person reserving multiple rooms.

“Do Not Disturb” sign used constantly.

Oh, and the fellow activist who paid for my hotel room? They hosted get-togethers in their suite throughout the weekend, inviting conference attendees to learn more about NCSF – another red flag: “Constant flow of men into a room at all hours.”

 

Now, to be fair, these are just four out of some four dozen indicators, some of which are clear warning signs of coercion or abuse. But the four I mentioned, and several more, are so vague or subjective that, when read out of context, could lead to invasions of privacy and false accusations.

 

Here are some others:

Individuals avoid eye contact and interaction with others – Whoever came up with this probably never knew that this is not uncommon for people on the autism spectrum, or who rank high on the introversion scale.

Individuals appear to be with a significantly older “boyfriend” or in the company of older males – How old is “significantly older”? Does this mean May-December relationships are now automatically suspect? What about a young woman accompanied by an older relative?

Evidence of pornography – Uh huh. Remember, we’re talking hotels here. Many of which have adult pay-per-view. Some have newsstands that sell Hustler and Penthouse. Or maybe the government has bought into the idea that nude photos in a magazine is some sort of “gateway drug” …

Extended stay with few or no personal possessions – Because airlines never lose people’s luggage. Right?

Provocative clothing and shoes – Excuse me, but has anyone noticed the trend in many high schools to declare virtually any female student’s attire short of a prairie dress as “provocative”?

Excessive amounts of sex paraphernalia in rooms (condoms, lubricant, lotion, etc.) – Okay, I’m sure some readers are wondering why I put this here. Set aside the vagueness of “excessive” for a moment. This particular “indicator” gives no mention of context. My recent trip was an example. The conference in question was for members of the BDSM community. So, yes, folks are going to bring all sorts of erotic accoutrements (and that’s not even touching on the various merchants and sex educators setting up booths there). And given that BDSM, swinger and polyamory conferences try to be discreet, just imagine a hotel worker not being informed of their presence and seeing a room filled with … get the picture?

Room paid for with cash or pre-loaded credit card – Because people with credit problems who are thus unable to get “real” credit cards never need to stay at a hotel, hm?

Minor taking on adult roles or behaving older than actual age (paying bills, requesting services) – Seems like a legit concern, right? Well, have you ever encountered a family where the parents are recent immigrants, and the kids have a higher proficiency in English? I have. The kids not only translate for their parents, they learn out of necessity how to deal with all sorts of situations, including how to handle money.

Room rented has fewer beds than patrons – Because college kids don’t trying to save money by cramming four people into a room with two beds. Or a family displaced by fire, or eviction. Yeah, those never happen.

Car in parking lot regularly parked backward, so the license plate is not visible – Yeah, absolutely no one has a car with a front license plate. And except for evil traffickers, everyone parks front first, right?

Patron claims to be an adult although appearance suggests he/she is a minor – Ask anyone who works at a bar if they’ve had to card an adult who looked younger than they are. Yup, it happens. Happened to me when I was thirty-five. And about half a dozen other people I know.

This is not to say that people who engage in trafficking and other nefarious activities don’t do these things. They do – and so do lots of other people. If a survey showed that a majority of traffickers spoke two or more languages, it doesn’t mean that being able to speak another language indicates that someone is a trafficker. It’s also typical of anti-trafficking rhetoric that these assumptions are rooted in biases about gender, race, class, and immigration status. Imagine a hotel employee, with superficial “trafficking awareness” training, reporting a guest – perhaps even you – on the basis of such hasty generalizations.

Human rights abuses should not be fought by the abuse of other rights. If we are to bring criminals to justice, or help victims find relief, then let’s make sure we are well-prepared to do it right, rather than run roughshod over innocent people.

Consent in the BDSM Community at SSTAR

on Friday, 24 March 2017. Posted in NCSF News

Russell Stambaugh and Susan Wright will be presenting on the 30+ year history of kink safety and consent campaigns at the Annual Conference of the Society for Sex Therapy and Research (SSTAR) in Montreal, Quebec April 20, 2017.

 

This is a 3 CE preconference institute, and you won't need to miss a minute of the excellent SSTAR main program. It includes their research report on the 2014 Consent Violations Survey examining consent violations in a kink context.

 

This is designed for anyone interested in becoming a kink-aware clinician and those seeking to understand what teaching consent may or may not accomplish with kinky people.

 

We hope to see you in Montreal!

Preconference Institute on Consent and Kink at SSTAR

on Wednesday, 15 March 2017. Posted in Front Page Headline, NCSF News

Russell Stambaugh, NCSF Kink Aware Professionals Advocate, and Susan Wright, NCSF Spokesperson, will be presenting on the 30+ year history of kink safety and consent campaigns at the Annual Conference of the Society for Sex Therapy and Research (SSTAR) in Montreal, Quebec April 20, 2017.
 
This is a 3 CE preconference institute, and you won't need to miss a minute of the excellent SSTAR main program. It includes their research report on the 2014 Consent Violations Survey examining consent violations in a kink context.
 
This is designed for anyone interested in becoming a kink-aware clinician and those seeking to understand what teaching consent may or may not accomplish with kinky people.
 
We hope to see you in Montreal!

Update on the American Law Institute Project

on Sunday, 26 February 2017. Posted in Front Page Headline, NCSF News

Dick Cunningham, NCSF's legal counsel, has been selected for membership in the American Law Institute. The ALI is the American law profession's elite organization for the study of important current legal issues and the drafting of "model laws." The model laws drafted by the ALI, often in a process, are generally incorporated, albeit often with some amendments, by the great majority of state legislatures in their civil and criminal laws. As a member, Dick will now have the opportunity to participate in any of the ALI's on-going model law projects.

At the top of Dick's priority list will be two projects of direct importance to NCSF. The most important is the Institute's on-going effort to revise criminal laws concerning various forms of sexual assault and-of particular interest to NCSF: the principles of consent applicable in such criminal prosecutions. NCSF has already made written submissions to that ALI project that have been favorably received and that promise to introduce into the model laws and commentary concepts that clarify the issue of consent in the context of BDSM.

The second project in which Dick will participate is the ALI's study of the issues concerning sex on college campuses. This whole subject is almost daily in the newsheadlines. Here again, issues concerning the rules of consent are central to the project, and decisions made as to consent in this emotionally-charged context could have implications-good or bad-to the criminal law of consent in the BDSM context.

Look for more updates on the ALI project in the coming months.

***

Novedades sobre el Proyecto del Instituto de Derecho Americano (American Law Institute)

Dick Cunningham, asesor legal de la NCSF, ha sido elegid miembro del Instituto de Derecho Americano. El ALI (American Law Institute) es la organización de elite de profesionales del Derecho que se dedica al estudio de asuntos legales actuales importantes y el diseño de "modelos de leyes". Los modelos de leyes esbozados por la ALI, a menudo aún en proceso, son generalmente incorporados, aunque frecuentemente con algunas enmiendas, por la mayoría de las legislaturas estatales en sus leyes civiles y criminales. Como miembro, Dick tendrá a partir de ahora la oportunidad de participar en cualquiera de los proyectos de modelos de leyes en curso.

En lo alto de la lista de prioridades de Dick estarán dos proyectos con una importancia directa para la NCSF. El más importante es el esfuerzo, aún en curso, del Instituto para revisar las leyes criminales referentes a varias formas de asalto sexual y -especialmente interesante para la NCSF-: los principios del consentimiento aplicables en dichos procesos penales. La NCSF ya ha presentado alegaciones por escrito para tal proyecto de la ALI las cuales han sido recibidas favorablemente y prometen introducir en los modelos de leyes ejemplos de ideas que clarifiquen la cuestión del consentimiento en el contexto del BDSM.

El segundo proyecto en el cual Dick participará será el estudio de la ALI sobre cuestiones relativas al sexo en los campus universitarios. Este asunto suele estar casi a diario en los titulares de las noticias. Nuevamente las cuestiones relativas a las normas del consentimiento son fundamentales para el proyecto y las decisiones tomadas en cuanto al consentimiento en este contexto emocionalmente intenso podrían tener consecuencias -buenas o malas- en la legislación penal sobre el consentimiento en el contexto del BDSM.

Busque más novedades sobre el proyecto ALI en los próximos meses.

Guest Blog - Hypnosis and consent: it's all about what you believe

on Saturday, 25 February 2017. Posted in Front Page Headline, NCSF News

By Nathalie Rupert

The ubiquitous fantasy that you meet a dark, mysterious stranger who makes you do things you find sexy but you never really dared to do before has become very popular in the past few years, almost mainstream, you could say. This fantasy has a number of variants, and that best-selling book is only one of them; the fantasy of hypnosis or mind control is another.

In the early 2000s people who loved the fantasy of hypnosis or mind control shared erotica with each other online and discovered they were not alone. It's an unusual fantasy, and it's difficult to talk about; without the internet we could have gone our whole lives thinking that we were weird, never meeting each other. But the internet turned out to be a great place to meet each other and talk about our fantasies. And as the internet grew and matured, this fetish was as welcome as any other on fetish and BDSM websites.

The beauty of modern online fetish communities is that they are not just about porn and erotica; they allow their members to talk to each other, not just about their fantasies, about everything: their lives, how they enjoy their fetish, organising meetings with other fetishists, how to establish and maintain consent, how to enjoy their fetish safely without hurting themselves or their partner(s). The online erotic hypnosis community grew and thrived, despite all the ugly myths that exist about hypnosis.

While outsiders who have seen a hypnosis show or an article about a hypnotherapist being blamed for something bad that has happened to their client might think that a hypnotized person doesn't know what's happening to them and has no way to object, hypnofetishists are organising workshops and writing essays on how the human mind reacts to hypnosis, all the ways a hypnotized person can reject and undo the things a hypnotist says to them, and what to do if a hypnosis session becomes a negative experience.

There are many misconceptions about what hypnosis is and what it isn't, some people seem to think it's all fake make believe, while others purport that it is dangerous traumatic mind control and some people seem to think it's both. All the while, the hypnofetishists who know a lot about hypnosis because they have hours upon hours of experience with it, on top of their official licenses and degrees, lack credibility when they talk about their experience, because their experience is in a sexual context. Our knowledge doesn't count because we're labelled as perverts. And in the current political climate in the US, credit card companies, anti-porn and anti-obscenity initiatives are working to shut down the places where the perverts can communicate with each other online, even if we communicate about how to use hypnosis consensually and safely.

So here are the facts. Hypnosis is a way to learn and quickly connect ideas together. You can learn to feel disgusted when you smell a cigarette. You can learn to connect happy thoughts to healthy food. You can learn to disconnect panic and anxiety from the things you fear. Connecting ideas together like this, following hypnotic suggestions, is a skill that can be learned, and not everyone is good at it, which is why stage hypnotists spend so much time weeding and finding the talented people in the audience. But that skill definitely gets better with practice, and anyone can learn it.

To go into hypnosis and follow a hypnotic suggestion, you need three things:

You need to be able to understand what the hypnotist is saying to you

You need to be able to concentrate and use your imagination

You need to trust that this is going to work, that the hypnotist is competent at helping you go into trance and that they will not harm you in any way

If one of these three things is missing, you will not go into trance. A few examples:

You will not be hypnotized if you can't hear what the hypnotist is saying to you, or if you can't understand it because of loud noise or a language barrier. If the hypnotist is not an eloquent person who stutters and fails to get their points and ideas across, you will not go into hypnosis, and this is why many hypnotists pride themselves in their skill.

If you have problems concentrating because you are in a distracting environment, or you have a mental condition that impairs your concentration, you will find it very difficult to be hypnotized. If you have trouble using your imagination to picture what the hypnotist is saying, or if the hypnotist is using metaphors that make no sense to you, chances are that you will not follow any of the hypnotic suggestions given to you.

If you sit down with a hypnotist, confident that you can not be hypnotized under any circumstances and that the hypnotist is a fraud, nothing will happen. If you do not trust the hypnotist, or the hypnotist does or says something while you are in trance that makes you uncomfortable, you will most likely wake up immediately and "the spell will be broken" nullifying any of the effects the hypnosis might have had on you.

Hypnosis works like that because hypnosis is a tool to connect ideas together. Positive experiences can help you connect the idea of hypnosis to those happy moments, while misconceptions and negative experiences can reinforce the idea that hypnosis is bad. The more people spread the idea that once you are under hypnosis, you can no longer refuse anything the hypnotist says to you, or even remember anything, the more people believe this. If only us perverts could show all the ways that we can safeguard consent in hypnosis. Once you have seen someone wake up from hypnosis of their own accord to tell the hypnotist that this is not what they want, the easier it will be for you to do the same if the need arises.

Here are some lesser known facts that erotic hypnotists know all about: Most hypnotized people remember everything that has happened to them during trance, as evidenced by the stories and memories shared by hypnofetishists in online groups. Even if a person is following a hypnotic suggestion to be frozen in place, or to behave like an animal or like a mindless zombie, they will still safeguard themselves from harm. I have personally seen hypnotized people move out of the way of falling objects, carefully move around tables and chairs in order not to hurt themselves, and stay away from people they don't like. This is where the idea that hypnosis is fake comes from, because underneath it all, it's still you. Hypnosis is an illusion that the hypnotist helps you believe in.

So if the media perpetuate this idea that hypnosis is mind control, and the hypnotized person has no way to assert their will anymore once they are hypnotized, that idea becomes a part of the illusion of hypnosis. However, if we manage to educate people about how hypnosis really works, that all of the effects are in the mind of the subject, and therefore the subject can always make it stop, then it becomes clear that hypnosis is a consensual activity.

 
[12 3 4 5  >>