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Kristen French Child Advocacy Centre Niagara

Glossary of

Street Terms

Related to Commercial Sexual Exploitation

Automatic: Daily quota owed to a pimp.

Bitch: Sex trade worker who works under a pimp.

Bottom Bitch: A pimp’s main girl, who has been with him for a long time and earned his trust. She has more responsibilities than the other girls in the pimp’s stable, such as recruiting new girls and keeping the other girls under control.

Boyfriend: Term used by trafficked girls to refer to their trafficker.

Carpet Ho(e): Sex trade worker who works out of hotels or motels.

Change it to the Game: In pimp slang, this is a way of saying that something is a loss, but that a lesson has been learned.

Choose Suzy: Sex trade worker changes pimps.

Curb Crawler: Man who drives around for the purpose of soliciting prostitutes.

Daddy: Term used by sex trade workers to refer to their pimps.

Date: A paid interaction between a sex trade worker and a client.

Front: Legitimate business used to cover up illegal activities. For example, a massage parlor may be a front for a brothel.

Gorilla/Guerilla Pimp: A pimp who uses violence to control the girls/women and/or boys/men working for him/her.

Hoe: Term used by pimps to refer to prostituted women.

In Pocket: Committed to a pimp.

Indoor Pimp: A pimp who works in escort services, clubs, bars or casinos.

John: A man who pays for sexual services. A sex trade worker’s client.

King Ho(e): Refer to “Bottom Bitch”

Knocking: Grooming young women and girls for prostitution.

Live People: Sex trade workers.

Lot Lizard: Prostitute providing services at truck stops to people in the trucking industry.

Mack: Pimp.

Mack Pimp: A pimp who works with street level sex workers who have typically worked in the same location for a long time.

Manager: Term used by pimps to refer to themselves.

Mother Ho(e): Refer to “Bottom Bitch”

Out of Pocket: Term used when a women/girl breaks the rules by making eye contact with another pimp or arguing with her pimp.

Outdoor Pimp: A pimp who works on the streets.

Popcorn Pimp: Small time pimp who has few women/girls working under him.

Scratch: Money

Square: 1. A person trying to exit the game; 2. Authority figure, such as law enforcement.

Stable: A pimp’s stable are the women/girls he controls.

Streetwalker: Prostitute who solicits customers on the street or in other public places.

Stroll: See “Track”

Swishing: Gang rape.

The Game: Term used to refer to the commercial sex trade.

Track: Area of town or city where sex trade workers solicit customers.

Trick: See “Date”

Trick Pad: A place, usually a house in a secluded area, where girls are kept against their will and are coerced to engage in prostitution.

Turn Tricks: To offer sexual services in exchange for payment.

Wife in Law: See “Bottom Bitch”

Terms Related to Aboriginal Communities

Aboriginal People: A collective name for the original people of North America and their descendants. The Canadian Constitution (the Constitution Act, 1982) recognizes three groups of Aboriginal peoples – Indians, Métis, and Inuit. These are three separate peoples with unique heritages, languages, cultural practices, and spiritual beliefs.

Aboriginal Rights: Collective rights, based on Aboriginal occupation and use of lands and customs, traditions, and practices that make Aboriginal societies distinctive. For an activity to be an Aboriginal right, it must be an element of a practice, custom, or tradition which is integral to the distinctive culture of the Aboriginal community claiming the right.

First Nations communities: the activity must have existed at the time of first contact with Europeans.

Métis communities: the activity must have existed prior to the time of effective European control in an area.

In both instances, the current practice, custom, or tradition must have continuity with the historic practice, custom, or tradition, and it must remain integral to the community’s culture. Present-day activities may be exercised in a modern way. Aboriginal rights are protected by Section 35 (1) of the Constitution Act, 1982.

Band: A body of Indians for whose collective use and benefit lands have been set apart or money has been held by the Crown, or who are declared to be a band for the purposes of the Indian Act. Each band has its own governing band council, usually consisting of one chief and councilors by election, or sometimes through custom. The members of a band generally share common values, traditions, and practices rooted in their ancestral heritage. Today, many bands prefer to be known as First Nations.

Band Council: The governing body of a band. It usually consists of a chief and councilors, who are elected for two- or three-year terms (under the Indian Act or band custom) to carry out band business, which may include education; water, sewer, and fire services; bylaws; community buildings; schools; roads; and other community businesses and services.

Chief: The leader of a First Nation community or council who is elected by members of the First Nation, by the councilors according to the Indian Act, or through custom elections.

Elder: A man or woman whose wisdom about spirituality, culture, and life is recognized by the community. Elders can be any age. The Aboriginal community and individuals will normally seek the advice and assistance of elders in various traditions and contemporary areas.

First Nation(s): A term that came into common usage in the 1970s to replace the word “Indian.” It has also been adopted by some First Nation communities to replace the term “band.”

Healing Circle: A talking circle with the intention of specifically addressing or healing an individual or individuals. Often lead by an elder or spiritual leader, the healing circle is more formal than the talking circle.

Hereditary Chief: A leader who has power passed down from one generation to the next along blood lines or other cultural protocols.

Indian Act: Canadian federal legislation first passed in 1876, and amended several times since. It sets out certain federal government obligations and regulates the management of Indian reserve lands, Indian moneys, and other resources. Among its many provisions, the Indian Act currently requires the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development to manage certain moneys belonging to First Nations and Indian lands and to approve or disallow First Nations bylaws.

Indian Status: A person’s legal status as an Indian, as defined by the Indian Act.

Inuit: The Aboriginal people of Arctic Canada. Inuit live primarily in Nunavut, the Northwest Territories, and northern parts of Newfoundland and Labrador and Quebec. They have traditionally lived above the tree line in the area bordered by the Mackenzie Delta in the west, the Labrador coast in the east, the southern point of Hudson Bay in the south, and the High Arctic islands in the north.

Inuk: Inuk is the singular form of Inuit. Use “Inuk” when referring to one person. When referring to two people, the correct term is “Inuuk.” For three or more people, it is “Inuit.”

Métis: The word “Métis” is French for “mixed blood.” The Canadian Constitution recognizes Métis people as one of the three Aboriginal peoples. The term “Métis” is used broadly to describe people with mixed First Nations and European ancestry who identify themselves as Métis, distinct from Indian people, Inuit, or non-Aboriginal people. (Many Canadians have mixed Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal ancestry, but not all identify themselves as Métis). Note that Métis organizations in Canada have differing criteria about who qualifies as a Métis person.

Medicine Wheel: A symbol that represents the circle of life. It is a very deep and complex symbol. The medicine wheel comes from prairie cultures but it now common to all Aboriginal communities. A core concept of the Medicine Wheel is balance, harmony, and interconnectedness.

A Medicine Wheel can represent:
• The four stages of life: infant, youth, adult, and elder
• The four races of humans: black, yellow, white, and red
• The four seasons, the four cardinal directions, etc.

Non-status Indian: People who consider themselves to be Indian or members of a First Nation, but the Government of Canada doesn’t recognize them as Indians under the Indian Act. Non-status Indians aren’t entitled to the same rights and benefits available to Status Indians.

Off-Reserve: A term used to describe people, services, or objects that are not part of a reserve, but relate to First Nations.

Registered Indian: See “Status Indian.”

Reserve: A tract of land, the legal title to which is held by the federal government, set apart for the use and benefit of an Indian band. Some bands have more than one reserve.

Smudge: One of the most common Aboriginal ceremonies. It is usually considered a purification ceremony. This ceremony is done by burning specific plants and brushing the smoke over oneself. Like all ceremonies, the smudge invites health into a person’s life.

Status Indian: People who are entitled to have their names included on the Indian Register, and official list maintained by the federal government. Certain criteria determine who can be registered as a Status Indian. Only Status Indians are recognized as Indians under the Indian Act, which defines an Indian as “a person who, pursuant to this Act, is registered as an Indian or is entitled to be registered as an Indian.” Status Indians are entitled to certain rights and benefits under the law.

Sweat Lodge: A small, covered frame of willows with hot rock placed in the center. Water is thrown on the rocks to create steam. The sweat lodge can best be described as a re birthing process. It is used for purification, spiritual renewal, healing, education of the youth, etc.

Talking Circle: A ceremony where a group, sitting in a circle, will take turns sharing and/or discussing specific issues.

Treaty: An agreement made between the Crown and First Nations with the intention of creating mutually binding obligations, which would be solemnly respected.

Treaty Indian: A Status Indian who belongs to a First Nation that signed a treaty with the Crown.

Treaty Rights: Treaty rights are the specific rights of the Aboriginal peoples embodied in the treaties they entered into with Crown governments (initially France and Britain, then Canada after Confederation). Generally, historic treaties are in writing. Courts have found that oral promises can also form part of a treaty and give rise to treaty rights.

LGBT Terms

Ally: Someone who confronts heterosexism, homophobia, biphobia, transphobia, heterosexual and genderstraight privilege in themselves and others; a concern for the well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, and intersex people; and a belief that heterosexism, homophobia, biphobia and transphobia are social justice issues.

Asexual: Person who is not sexually attracted to anyone or does not have a sexual orientation..

Bicurious: A curiosity about having sexual relations with a same gender/sex person.

Bigendered: A person whose gender identity is a combination of male/man and female/woman.

Biphobia: The fear of, discrimination against, or hatred of bisexuals, which is often times relation to the current binary standard. Biphobia can bee within the LGBTQI community, as well as in general society.

Butch: A person who identifies themselves as masculine, whether is be physically, mentally or emotionally. ‘Butch’ is sometimes used as a derogatory term for lesbians, but it can also be claimed as an affirmative identity label.

Cisgender: An adjective used in the context of gender issues and counseling to refer to a class of gender identities formed by a match between an individual’s gender identity and the behaviour or role considered appropriate for on’es sex. Cisgender is used to contrast transgender on the gender spectrum.

Coming Out: May refer to the process by which one accepts one’s own sexuality, gender identity, or status as an intersexed person (to “come out” to oneself). May also refer to the process by which one shares one’s sexuality, gender identity, or intersexed status with others (to “come out” to friends, etc.). This can be a continual, life-long process for homosexual, bisexual, transgendered, and intersexed individuals.

Cross-Dresser: Someone who wears clothes of another gender/sex.

Dyke: Derogatory term referring to a masculine lesbian. Other terms include lezzie, lesbo, butch, bull dyke and diesel dyke. Many women have reclaimed these words and use them profoundly to describe their identity.

Fag: Derogatory term referring to someone perceived as non-heteronormative. Other terms include fruit, faggot, queen, fairy, pansy, sissy and homo. Many men have reclaimed these words and use them profoundly to describe their identity.

FTM/F2M: Abbreviation for female-to-male transgender or transsexual person.

Gay: 1. Term used in some cultural settings to represent males who are attracted to males in a romantic, erotic and/or emotional sense. Not all men who engage in “homosexual behaviour” identify as gay, and as such this label should be used with caution. 2. Term used to refer to the LGBTQI community as a whole, or as an individual identity label for anyone who does not identify as heterosexual.

Gender: One’s expression of masculinity, femininity or androgyny in words, person, organisms or characteristics.

Gender Binary: The idea that there are only two genders – male/female or man/woman and that a person must be strictly gendered as either/or.

Gender Diverse: A person who either by nature or by choice does not conform to gender based expectations of society.

Gender Identity: A person’s sense of being masculine, feminine or other gendered.

Genderism: The belief that there are and/or should be only two genders and that one’s gender, or most aspects of it, is inevitably tied to biological sex. For example, any form that asks the person filling it out to specify their gender by checking off one of two boxes, one labeled male and the other female, reflects genderist attitudes.

Genderqueer: A gender diverse person whose gender identity is neither male nor female, is between or beyond genders, or is some combination of genders. This identity is usually related to or in reaction to the social constructions of gender, gender stereotypes and the gender binary system.

Heteronormativity: The assumption, in individuals or in institutions, that everyone is heterosexual, and that heterosexuality is superior to homosexuality and bisexuality.

Heterosexism: Prejudice against individuals and groups who display non-heterosexual behaviours or identities, combined with the majority power to impose such prejudice. Usually used to the advantage of the group in power. Any attitude, action, or practice – backed by institutional power – that subordinates people because of their sexual orientation.

Heterosexual Privilege: Those benefits derived automatically by being heterosexual that are denied to homosexuals and bisexuals. Also, the benefits homosexuals and bisexuals receive as a result of claiming heterosexual identity or denying homosexual or bisexual identity.

Homophobia: The irrational fear or hatred of homosexuals, homosexuality, or any behaviours or belief that does not conform to rigid sex role stereotypes. It is this fear that enforces sexism as well as heterosexism.

Homosexual: A person primarily emotionally, physically, and/or sexually attracted to members of the same sex.

Identity Sphere: The idea that gender identifies and expressions do not fit on a linear scale, but rather on a sphere that allows room for all expression without weighting any one expression as better than another.

In the Closet: Refers to homosexual, bisexual , trans person or intersex person who will not or cannot disclose their sex, sexuality, sexual orientation or gender identity to their friends, family, co-workers, or society. An intersex person may be closeted due to ignorance about their status since standard medical practice is to “correct” whenever possible, intersex conditions early in childhood and to hide the medical history from the patient. There are varying degrees of being “in the closet”; for example, a person can be out in their social life, but in the closet at work, or with their family. Also known as ‘Downlow‘ or ‘D/L’.

Intergender: A person whose gender identity is between genders or a combination of genders.

Internalized Homophobia: Fear and self-hatred of one’s own sexual orientation that occurs for many lesbians and gay men as a result of heterosexism and homophobia. Once lesbians and gay men realize that they belong to a group of people that is often despised and rejected in our society, many internalize and incorporate this stigmatization, and fear or hate themselves.

Lesbian: Term used to describe female-identified people attracted romantically, erotically, and/or emotionally to other female-identified people.

LGBTTSQI: A common abbreviation for lesbian, gay, trans, two spirit, queer and intersex community. In Canada, the longest and most inclusive term used is LGBTTIQQ2SAA which stands for Lesbians, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Transsexual, Intersex, Queer, Questioning, Two Spirited, Asexual and Ally.

MTF/M2F: Abbreviation for male-to-female transgender or transsexual person.

Pangendered: A person whose gender identity is comprised of all or many gender expressions.

Pansexual: A person who is sexually attracted to all or many gender expressions.

Passing: Describes a person’s ability to be accepted as their preferred gender/sex or race/ethnic identity or to be seen as heterosexual.

Queer: 1. An umbrella term which embraces a matrix of sexual preferences, orientations, and habits of the not-exclusively-heterosexual-and-monogamous majority. 2. This term is sometimes used as a sexual orientation label instead of ‘bisexual’ as a way of acknowledging that there are more than two genders to be attracted to, or as a way stating a non-heterosexual orientation without have to state who they are attracted to. 3. A reclaimed word that was formerly used solely as a slur but that has been semantically overturned by members of the maligned group, who use it as a term of defiant pride. A sizeable percentage of people to whom this term might apply still hold ‘queer’ to be a hateful insult, and its words are usually offensive to the in-group when used by outsiders, so extreme caution must be taken concerning their use when one is not a member of the group.

Questioning: This term is used to explain the phenomena that some individuals are unclear as to their sexual orientation and/or gender identity. They are questioning it.

Sexual Orientation: The desire for intimate emotional and/or sexual relationships with people of the same gender/sex, another gender/sex, or multiple gender/sexes.

Sexual Reassignment Surgery (SRS): A term used by some medical professionals to refer to a group of surgical options that alter a person’s “sex”. In most jurisdictions, one or multiple surgeries are required to achieve legal recognition of gender variance.

Trans: An abbreviation that is sometimes used to refer to a gender diverse person. This use allows a person to state a gender diverse identity without having to disclose hormonal or surgical status/intentions. This term is sometimes used to refer to the gender diverse community as whole.

Transgender: A person who lives as a member of a gender other than that expected based on anatomical sex. Sexual orientation varies and is not dependent on gender identity.

Transition: This term is primarily used to refer to the process a gender diverse person undergoes when changing their bodily appearance either to be congruent with the gender/sex they feel themselves to be and/or to be in harmony with their preferred gender expression.

Transman: An identity label sometimes adopted by female-to-male transsexual to signify that they are men while still affirming their history as females. Also referred to as ‘transguy(s)’.

Transphobia: The irrational fear to those who are gender diverse and/or inability to deal with gender ambiguity.

Transsexual: A person who identified psychologically as a gender/sex other than the one to which they were assigned at birth. Transsexuals often wish to transform their bodies hormonally and surgically to match their inner sense of gender/sex.

Transwoman: An identity label sometimes adopted by male-to-female transsexual to signify that they are woman while still affirming their history as males.

Two-Spirited: Is the term by which many First Nations LGBTT2IQQ people identify themselves. In a broader sense, two-spirit is a term that can encompass an integration of alternative sexuality and/or alternative gender with Native spirituality.

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