Strippers in Washington have no problem exposing their bodies, but they've gotten touchy about covering up their names and addresses.
It's in response to Pierce County's David Van Vleet who filed court papers to get the personal information that's on their state entertainer licenses. Van Vleet says he's going to pray for the salvation of the exotic dancers, but that his supplications won't work without knowing the full names and home addresses of the showgirls.
He filed a public disclosures request last month with the Pierce County Auditor’s Office to get the information, much of which is on the entertainer's licenses that all strippers and strip club managers in Washington State are required to have, according to KIRO TV.
The annual fee is $75 and includes the applicant's real name, date of birth, address a full-color photo, and other identifying information.
Van Vleet, a civil engineer, told a federal judge on Thursday that he wanted the information because he's curious and wants to pray for the strippers.
“I would pray for those dancers by name,” David Van Vleet said, according to TheNewsTribune.com. “I’m a Christian…We have a right to pray for people.”
Pierce County Auditor Julie Anderson concedes that absent a court order, the auditor's office is required to release the licenses under the Public Records Act.
However, when processing Van Vleet's request, she chose to let 125 license holders know that he was interested in their details.
“Given the nature of the work performed by these people, I opted to give them a heads-up,” Anderson said, according to the Bellingham Herald.
That heads-up led a strip club manager and a dancer to sue Pierce County on Tuesday to block the release of their business licenses,.
"They have an enormous privacy interest and not disclosing their identity," Jenn Kaplan, who represents the dancers, told KING TV. "Many of them have suffered domestic abuse, many of them are trying to prevent people from knowing their whereabouts."
U.S. District Judge Ronald B. Leighton issued a preliminary injunction blocking the release of the business licenses and names, saying the release of the information could be used to harass or threaten dancers or strip club managers, the Associated Press reports.
That made Van Vleet unhappy.
“[The judge] essentially silenced seven million people in the state of Washington to protect 70 peoples’ so-called right to privacy who dance on a stage naked,” he said, according to RawStory.com.
There may be another hearing in December that could lead to a more permanent injunction.
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