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A paramedic in New York City, Lauren Kwei, was recently outed by the New York Post for having an OnlyFans to make extra money.

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Source: Xinhua News Agency / Getty

The 23-year-old medical worker runs her own OnlyFans account, posting pictures for her followers in order to make some supplemental income. While anyone’s side-gig–especially in a time like this–isn’t anyone’s business, the Post decided to publish an article with the headline: “NYC medic helped ‘make ends meet’ with racy OnlyFans side gig” using her face as the article’s feature image.

“What I do in my free time is my business. It has no effect on how I care for my patients,” Kwei said in the article after her requests to remain anonymous were ignored. “I know when I’m working, I’m a paramedic. I think I’m pretty good at my job.”

Once the aforementioned headline made its way to Twitter, the Post was bombarded with backlash, with people wondering why they thought it was appropriate to post an article about how this woman makes her money. Plus, a lot of folks–including Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez–pointed out that the shocking part of this shouldn’t be an OnlyFans account, but that fact that a medical worker doesn’t make enough to live off of her salary alone and has to get income elsewhere.

Even though most of the comments were very supportive of Kwei and very critical of the Post, this situation still created a lot of unwanted attention for Kwei. That drove her friends to create a GoFundMe page in her name in hopes to give Lauren a financial cushion.

“Recently Lauren was contacted by a national newspaper, Lauren asked to please remain anonymous and not be named. The newspaper and journalist (male) decided against honoring her request instead quoting her and misquoting her making her appear flippant and uncaring,” the GoFundMe description reads. “In reality Lauren is now at risk of losing her job, losing her ability to help support her family, her father is extremely ill and Lauren has nowhere to turn.”

The 23-year-old frontline worker also shared a lengthy letter regarding her story on GoFundMe and she said she has “nothing to be ashamed of.”

“I did not ask my parents for help because I’m an adult and wanted to make my own money. I never once spoke of my pictures at work or used my job as a paramedic to solicit subscribers. I know I did nothing wrong and I have nothing to be ashamed of.”

Kwei went on to talk about the exhaustion and mental health crisis currently plaguing EMS workers during the COVID-19 crisis.

“The NY Post gave me a voice. So here I am, showing myself to the world. I’m here to tell you all that my First Responder brothers and sisters are suffering. We need your help. We have been exhausted for months, reusing months old PPE, being refused hazard pay, and watching our fellow healthcare workers die in front of our eyes, in our ambulances,” Kwei exclaimed.

“At least three NYC EMS workers died by suicide this year and there has been very little action about the lack of mental health care accessibility for first responders. EMS are the lowest paid first responders in NYC which leads to 50+ hour weeks and sometimes three jobs. My brothers and sisters DESERVE CHANGE!”

“How’s that for a story, NY Post?!,” she concluded her emotional letter.

As of Tuesday, the GoFundMe has raised more than $50,000.

What do YOU think about this story? Was the New York Post wrong for putting Lauren’s “side hustle” on blast?

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