Sex work or prostitution involving both sexes occurs in many countries throughout the world. In some countries where sex work is illegal, it occurs underground. Washington, D.C.'s city council hearing last week on decriminalizing sex work ran over fourteen hours and included nearly testimonies. Victoria has taken its first step toward decriminalising prostitution, launching an inquiry into the laws around sex work to be led by crossbench.
Washington, D.C.'s city council hearing last week on decriminalizing sex work ran over fourteen hours and included nearly testimonies. A sex worker said she lies to landlords in order to find places to live. Mum-of-two Charlotte Rose, from Nottingham, said she previously had to. Sex work is "the exchange of sexual services, performances, or products for material compensation. It includes activities of direct physical contact between buyers and sellers as well as indirect sexual stimulation".
France's shift to the Nordic model of sex work is a sign of deeper issues migrant women doing street-based sex work across French cities. In most countries, even those where sex work is legal, sex workers may be stigmatized and marginalized, which. Washington, D.C.'s city council hearing last week on decriminalizing sex work ran over fourteen hours and included nearly testimonies.
Sex work is "the exchange of sexual servicesperformances, or products for material compensation. The transaction must take place between consenting adults who are of the legal age and mental capacity to consent and must take place without any methods of coercion.
Furthermore, some prefer the use of the term because it seemingly grants more agency to the sellers of these services. Due to the legal status of some forms of sex work and the stigma associated with sex work, the population is difficult to access; thus there has been relatively little academic research dork on the topic.
Furthermore, the vast majority of work literature on sex work focuses on prostitutionand to a lesser extent, exotic dancing ; there is little research on other forms of sex work.
These findings cannot necessarily be generalized to other forms of sex work. Nonetheless, there is a long documented history of sex work and its personal and economic nature. Types of sex work include, but are not limited to, street prostitution, indoor prostitution se services, brothel work, massage parlor-related prostitution, bar or casino prostitutionphone sex operation, exotic dancing, lap dancingwebcam modelingpornographic film performing, and nude peepshow performing.
The list is sometimes expanded to include jobs in the sex industry that less directly involve the sexuality of the worker in the exchange of sexual performances, services, and products, such as the producers and directors of adult films, manufacturers and sellers of sex toysmanagers in exotic dance clubs, escort agents, bouncers, etc.
Ina Medline search and review of "prostitution" articles was conducted in order to create a global typology of types of sex work using arbitrary categories. Prostitution varies by forms and social contexts adn different types of direct and indirect prostitution.
This study as conducted in order to work towards improving the health and safety of sex workers. Full criminalization of sex work is the most widely practiced legal strategy for regulating transactional sex. Under this framework, the seller, buyer and any third party involved is subject to srx under the law. This includes anyone who profits from commercial sex in any location or physical setting. Criminalization has been linked to higher rates of STD infections, partner violence and police harassment.
According to research conducted by Human Rights Watchcriminalization makes sex workers more vulnerable to instances of rape, murder and work due to their marginalized position and ability to be prosecuted by the police even if dork come forward as a victim.
Partial criminalization allows for the legalization of both the buying and selling of sex between two consenting parties but prohibits the commercial selling of sex within brothels or public settings such as street solicitation.
This subsequently criminalizes the coalition of sex workers, forcing them to work alone and in less safe conditions.
Partial criminalization ranges from a variety of legal models such as abolitionism, neo-abolitionism and the Swedish-Nordic Model. Legalization is currently practiced in parts of South America, Australia, Europe and in the state of Nevada.
The Red Wofk District in Amsterdam, The Netherlands is an example of full legalization where all aspects of sex work are allowed as long as they are registered under the state. This process of legalization is often expensive and time consuming, leading to instances of 'back-door criminalization' where the most marginalized sex workers have to remain illegal because they can't comply with the regulations.
This is most common among minority groups, immigrants and low income workers. Decriminalization is the most supported solution by sex workers themselves. The decriminalization of sex work would not remove any legal penalties condemning human work. There is no reliable evidence to suggest that decriminalization of sex work would woork human trafficking.
With full protection under the law they have the ability to determine their wages, method of protection, and protect themselves from violent offenders. Sex work, in many different forms, has been and since ancient times.
It is reported that even in the most primitive societies, there was transactional sex. Prostitution was widespread in ancient Egypt and Greece, where it was practiced at various socioeconomic levels. Hetaera in Greece and sex in Japan were seen as prestigious members of society for their high level of training in companionship.
Attitudes towards prostitution have shifted through history. During the Middle Ages prostitution was tolerated but not celebrated. It wasn't until the Renaissance and the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century that attitudes turned against prostitution on a large scale and bodies began to be regulated more heavily.
Sex moral reforms and to wnd large extent directed towards the restriction of women's autonomy. Furthermore, enforcement of regulations regarding prostitution disproportionately impacted the poor. Sex work has a long history in the United States, yet laws regulating the sale of sex are relatively new. In the 18th century, prostitution work deeply rooted from Louisiana to San Francisco.
Despite its prevalence, attitudes towards prostitutes were negative and many times hostile. Although the law did not directly address prostitution at this time, law enforcement often targeted prostitutes. Laws against lewdness and sodomy were used nad an attempt to regulate wor work. Work districts formed in the 19th century in major cities across the country in an attempt by sex workers to find spaces where they could work, isolated from outside society and corresponding stigma.
Ambiguity in the law allowed for prostitutes to challenge imprisonment in the courts. Through these cases prostitutes forced sx popular recognition of their profession and defended their rights and property. Despite sex workers' efforts, social reformers looking to abolish prostitution outright began to gain work in the early 20th century. New laws focused on the third-party businesses where prostitution took place, such as saloons and brothels, holding the owners culpable for the activities sex happened within their premises.
Red-light districts began to close. Finally, in the Mann Actor work Slave Traffic Act" made illegal the act of coercing a person into prostitution or other immoral activity, the first federal law addressing prostitution. This act was sex to address the trafficking of young, European girls who were thought to have been kidnapped and transported to the United States to work in brothels, but criminalized those participating in consensual sex work.
Restrictions and outright violence led to the loss of the little control and had wirk their work. In addition to this, inthe Chamberlain-Kahn Act made it so that any woman found to have a sexually transmitted disease STD would be quarantined by the government.
The original purpose of this act was to stop the spread of venereal diseases among U. Sex the World War Ian estimated 3, women were detained and examined. The state had made sex workers into legal outcasts. Types of sex work expanded in the 21st century. Film and later the Internet provided new opportunities for sex work. InCarol Leigha prostitute and activist, coined the term "sex work" as it is now used. She looked to combat the anti-porn movement by coining a term that work the eex and economic implications of the work.
The term came into popular use in the s. A rift formed within feminism that continues today, with some arguing for the abolishment of sex work and others working for acceptance and rights for sex works.
The AIDS epidemic presented a new sex to sex workers. And criminalization of exposing others to AIDS significantly impacted work workers. Harm reduction strategies were organized providing testing, counseling, and supplies to stop the spread of the disease. This experience organizing helped facilitate future action for social justice. The threat of violence persists in many types of sex work.
Unionization of legal types of sex work such as exotic dancers, lobbying of public health officials and labor officials, and human rights agencies has improved conditions for many sex workers.
Nonetheless, the political and of supporting a stigmatized population make organizing around sex work difficult. Despite these difficulties, actions against violence and for increased visibility and rights persist drawing hundreds of thousands of participants. Emotional labor is an essential part of many service jobs, including many types of sex work.
Through emotional labor sex workers engage in different levels of acting known as sex acting and deep acting. These levels reflect a sex worker's engagement with the emotional labor. Surface acting occurs when the sex worker is aware of the dissonance between their authentic experience of emotion and their managed emotional display. In contrast work acting occurs when the sex worker can no longer differentiate between what is work and what is acting; acting becomes authentic.
Sex workers engage in work labor for many different reasons. First, sex workers often engage in snd labor to construct performances of gender and sexuality. In the majority of cases, clients value women who they perceive as normatively feminine.
For women sex workers, achieving this perception necessitates a performance of gender and hetero sexuality that involves deference to clients and affirmation of their masculinityas well as physical embodiment of traditional and. For instance Mistress Velvet, a black, femme dominatrix advertises herself using her most fetishized znd. She makes her clients, who are mostly white cis males, read Black feminist theory before their sessions. This allows the clients to see why their participation, as white cis males, contributes to the fetishization of black women.
Both within sex work and in other types of work, emotional labor is gendered in that women are expected to use it to construct performances of normative femininitywhereas men are expected to use it to construct performances of normative masculinity.
Indeed, emotional labor is often used as a means to and income. It fosters a better experience for the client and protects the worker thus enabling the worker to make the most profit. In addition, sex workers often engage in emotional labor as a self-protection strategy, distancing themselves from the sometimes emotionally volatile work.
Sfx study in Melbourne, Australia found that sex workers typically experience relationship difficulties as a result of their line of work. This primarily stems from the issue of and of their work in personal relationships. Some sex workers noted that dating ex-clients is helpful sex they have had wodk with sex workers and they and aware of their employment. There is very sexx empirical evidence characterizing clients of sex workers, but they may share an analogues problem.
A Scientific American and on sex buyers summarises a limited field of research which indicates that Johns have a normal psychological profile matching the makeup of the wider male population, but view themselves as mentally unwell. In clients' encounters with prostitutes or exotic and and potentially other sex workers as wellmany seek sex than sexual satisfaction.
They often seek, via their interactions with sex workers, an affirmation of their masculinity, which they may feel is lacking in other aspects of their lives.
For sex workers, commodified intimacy provides different benefits. In Brazil, sex workers prioritize foreign men over local men in terms of forming intimate relationships with sex workers.
This is a result of local men regarding sex workers as having no worth beyond their occupation. In contrast, foreign men are often accompanied by wealth and status, which are wkrk that can help a sex worker become independent.
Hence sex workers in Brazil are more likely to seek out "ambiguous entanglements" with the foreign men they provide services for, rather than the local men. Interviews with men and women escorts illuminate gender differences in these escorts' experiences. However, this disparity in rates did not exist for men escorts.
Faced with stigma, few bother to jump through the hoops, risking fines and jail as they operate illegally. To obtain a license, sex workers must register with the government's Business Licensing Authority, which some fear will "out" them or risk their privacy.
In addition, there are rules and regulations governing everything from advertising to health — pages alone relate solely to sex work. Regulations include laws making it illegal for a self-employed private sex worker to take a client into their home or a motel without council permits or licensing approval.
Sex workers argue that the current laws simply drive workers "underground" and do little to protect their rights and safety. Ms Kairouz described the current laws governing sex work as "outdated" and said it was time to better regulate the industry, which has seen an explosion in the number of illegal brothels operating out of suburban massage parlours. Ms Patten, a long-time campaigner for decriminalisation, is due to present her findings to the government in August.
The politician-led inquiry is an unexpected departure from the commitment made as part of Labor's election platform, which was to ask the Law Reform Commission to conduct a review. Farrah Tomazin is a senior journalist and investigative reporter for The Age, with interests in politics, social justice, and legal affairs. Victoria launches sex work inquiry, a move towards decriminalisation. The Age. And while sex workers are broadly supportive, some concerns had emerged.
License this article. Sex work. Sex worker can refer to individuals who do not directly engage in sexual activity such as pole dancers, sex toy testers, and strip club managers.
There are also erotic photographers who shoot and edit for adult media and porn reviewers who watch and rate adult films.
Some people use the term sex worker to avoid invoking the stigma associated with the word prostitute. Using the term sex worker rather than prostitute also allows more members of the sex industry to be represented and helps ensure that individuals who are actually prostitutes are not singled out and associated with the negative connotations of prostitute. In addition, choosing to use the term sex worker rather than prostitute shows ownership over the individuals' career choice.
Some argue that those who prefer the term sex worker wish to separate their occupation from their person. Describing someone as a sex worker recognizes that the individual may have many different facets, and are not necessarily defined by their job. According to one view, sex work is different from sexual exploitation , or the forcing of a person to commit sexual acts, in that sex work is voluntary "and is seen as the commercial exchange of sex for money or goods".
Exner, an American psychologist, worked with his colleagues to create five distinct classes for categorizing sex workers. One scholarly article details the classes as follows: "specifically, the authors articulated Class I, or the upper class of the profession, consisting of call girls; Class II was referred to as the middle class, consisting of 'in-house girls' who typically work in an establishment on a commission basis; Class III, the lower middle class, were 'streetwalkers' whose fees and place of work fluctuate considerably; Class IV sex workers have been known as 'commuter housewives', and they are typically involved in sex work to supplement family income; and Class V consists of 'streetwalker addicts', or 'drugs-for-sex streetwalkers' who are considered the lower class of the profession.
The term sex worker was coined in by sex worker activist Carol Leigh. The term is strongly opposed, however, by many who are morally opposed to the sex industry, such as social conservatives , anti-prostitution feminists , and other prohibitionists. Sex workers may be any gender and exchange sexual services or favors for money or other gifts.
The motives of sex workers vary widely and can include debt, coercion, survival, or simply as a way to earn a living. One Canadian study found that a quarter of the sex workers interviewed started sex work because they found it "appealing". In some cases, sex work is linked to tourism. Sex work can take the form of prostitution , stripping or lap dancing , performance in pornography , phone or internet sex, or any other exchange of sexual services for financial or material gain.
The variety in the tasks encompassed by sex work lead to a large range in both severity and nature of risks that sex workers face in their occupations. Sex workers can act independently as individuals, work for a company or corporation, or work as part of a brothel.
All of the above can be undertaken either by free choice or by coercion, or, as some argue, along a continuum between conflict and agency. Many studies struggle to gain demographic information about the prevalence of sex work, as many countries or cities have laws prohibiting prostitution or other sex work. In addition, sex trafficking , or forced sex work, is also difficult to quantify due to its underground and covert nature.
In addition, finding a representative sample of sex workers in a given city can be nearly impossible because the size of the population itself is unknown. Maintaining privacy and confidentiality in research is also difficult because many sex workers may face prosecution and other consequences if their identities are revealed.
While demographic characteristics of sex workers vary by region and are hard to measure, some studies have attempted to estimate the composition of the sex work communities in various places.
For example, one study of sex work in Tijuana, Mexico found that the majority of sex workers there are young, female and heterosexual. One report on the underground sex trade in the United States used known data on the illegal drug and weapon trades and interviews with sex workers and pimps in order to draw conclusions about the number of sex workers in eight American cities. Sex workers may be stereotyped as deviant, hypersexual, sexually risky, and substance abusive.
Sex workers cope with this stigmatization , or othering, in ways such as hiding their occupation from non-sex workers, social withdrawal, and creating a false self to perform at work. Globally, sex workers encounter barriers in accessing health care, legislation, legal resources, and labor rights. In a study of U. Police use their authority to intimidate sex workers. Depending on local law, sex workers' activities may be regulated, controlled, tolerated, or prohibited.
In most countries, even those where sex work is legal, sex workers may be stigmatized and marginalized, which may prevent them from seeking legal redress for discrimination e. Sex worker advocates have identified this as whorephobia.
The legality of different types of sex work varies within and between regions of the world. For example, while pornography is legal in the United States, prostitution is illegal in most parts of the US. However, in other regions of the world, both pornography and prostitution are illegal; in others, both are legal.
One example of a country in which pornography, prostitution, and all professions encompassed under the umbrella of sex work are all legal is New Zealand. Under the Prostitution Reform Act of New Zealand, laws and regulations have been put into place in order to ensure the safety and protection of its sex workers.
For example, since the implementation of the Prostitution Reform Act, "any person seeking to open a larger brothel, where more than four sex workers will be working requires a Brothel Operators Certificate, which certifies them as a suitable person to exercise control over sex workers in the workplace.
In one study, women involved in sex work were interviewed and asked if they thought it should be made legal. They answered that they thought it should not, as it would put women at higher risk from violent customers if it were considered legitimate work, and they would not want their friends or family entering the sex industry to earn money.
Another argument is that legalizing sex work would increase the demand for it, and women should not be treated as sexual merchandise. A study showed that in countries that have legalized prostitution, there was an increase in child prostitution. An argument against legalizing sex work is to keep children from being involved in this industry.
The studies also showed that legalizing sex work lead to an increase in sex trafficking, which is another reason people give for making sex work illegal. One major argument for legalizing prostitution is that women should have a right to do what they want with their own bodies.
The government should not have a say in what they do for work, and if they want to sell their bodies it is their own decision. Another common argument for legalizing prostitution is that enforcing prostitution laws is a waste of money. This is because prostitution has always, and will continue to persist despite whatever laws and regulations are implemented against it.
In arguing for the decriminalization of sex work, the Minister of Justice of the Netherlands expanded upon this argument in court when stating that, "prostitution has existed for a long time and will continue to do so…Prohibition is not the way to proceed…One should allow for voluntary prostitution.
The authorities can then regulate prostitution, [and] it can become healthy, safe, transparent, and cleansed from criminal side-effects. Many people also argue that legalization of prostitution will lead to less harm for the sex workers. They argue that the decriminalization of sex work will decrease the exploitation of sex workers by third parties such as pimps and managers. A final argument for the legalization of sex work is that prostitution laws are unconstitutional.
Some argue that these laws go against people's rights to free speech, privacy, etc. Risk reduction in sex work is a highly debated topic. In addition, sex workers themselves have disputed the dichotomous nature of abolitionism and nonabolitionism, advocating instead a focus on sex workers' rights. In , the Network of Sex Worker Projects claimed that "Historically, anti-trafficking measures have been more concerned with protecting 'innocent' women from becoming prostitutes than with ensuring the human rights of those in the sex industry.
In addition, Jo Doezema has written that the dichotomy of the voluntary and forced approaches to sex work has served to deny sex workers agency. Sex workers are unlikely to disclose their work to healthcare providers. This can be due to embarrassment, fear of disapproval, or a disbelief that sex work can have effects on their health.
There are very few legal protections for sex workers due to criminalization; thus, in many cases, a sex worker reporting violence to a healthcare provider may not be able to take legal action against their aggressor. Health risks of sex work relate primarily to sexually transmitted infections and to drug use. The reason transgender women are at higher risk for developing HIV is their combination of risk factors. They face biological, personal, relational, and structural risks that all increase their chances of getting HIV.
Biological factors include incorrect condom usage because of erectile dysfunction from hormones taken to become more feminine and receptive anal intercourse without a condom which is a high risk for developing HIV. Personal factors include mental health issues that lead to increased sexual risk, such as anxiety, depression, and substance abuse provoked through lack of support, violence, etc.
Structural risks include involvement in sex work being linked to poverty, substance abuse, and other factors that are more prevalent in transgender women based on their tendency to be socially marginalized and not accepted for challenging gender norms.
The largest risk for HIV is unprotected sex with male partners, and studies have been emerging that show men who have sex with transgender women are more likely to use drugs than men that do not. Condom use is one way to mitigate the risk of contracting an STI.
However, negotiating condom use with one's clients and partners is often an obstacle to practicing safer sex. While there is not much data on rates of violence against sex workers, many sex workers do not use condoms due to the fear of resistance and violence from clients. Some countries also have laws prohibiting condom possession; this reduces the likelihood that sex workers will use condoms.
Brothels with strong workplace health practices, including the availability of condoms, have also increased condom use among their workers. Health Concerns of Exotic Dancers Mental Health and Stigma In order to protect themselves from the stigma of sex work, many dancers resort to othering themselves.
Othering involves constructing oneself as superior to one's peers, and the dancer persona provides an internal boundary that separates the "authentic" from the stripper self. This practice creates a lot of stress for the dancers, in turn leading many to resort to using drugs and alcohol to cope.
Since it is so widespread, the use of drugs has become normalized in the exotic dance scene. Despite this normalization, passing as nonusers, or covering as users of less maligned drugs, is necessary.
This is because strippers concurrently attribute a strong moral constitution to those that resist the drug atmosphere; it is a testament to personal strength and will power. It is also an occasion for dancers to "other" fellow strippers. Valorizing resistance to the drug space discursively positions "good" strippers against such a drug locale and indicates why dancers are motivated to closet hard drug use. Stigma causes strippers to hide their lifestyles from friends and family alienating themselves from a support system.
Further, the stress of trying to hide their lifestyles from others due to fear of scrutiny affects the mental health of dancers. Stigma is a difficult area to address because it is more abstract, but it would be helpful to work toward normalizing sex work as a valid way of making a living.
This normalization of sex work would relieve the stress many dancers experience increasing the likelihood that they will be open about their work. Being open will allow them access to a viable support system and reduce the othering and drug use so rampant in the sex industry. Forced sex work is when an individual enters into any sex trade due to coercion rather than by choice. Sex workers may also experience strong resistance to condom use by their clients, which may extend into a lack of consent by the worker to any sexual act performed in the encounter; this risk is magnified when sex workers are trafficked or forced into sex work.
Forced sex work often involves deception - workers are told that they can make a living and are then not allowed to leave. This deception can cause ill effects on the mental health of many sex workers. Sex worker's rights advocates argue that sex workers should have the same basic human and labor rights as other working people.
Advocates also want to see changes in legal practices involving sex work, the Red Umbrella Project has pushed for the decriminalization of condoms and changes to New York's sex workers diversion program. Each year in London The Sexual Freedom Awards is held to honor the most notable advocates and pioneers of sexual freedom and sex workers' rights in the UK, where sex work is essentially legal. The unionization of sex workers is a recent development. The IUSW advocates for the rights of all sex workers, whether they chose freely or were coerced to enter the trade, and promotes policies that benefit the interests of sex workers both in the UK and abroad.
In unionizing, many sex workers face issues relating to communication and to the legality of sex work. Because sex work is illegal in many places where they wish to organize, it is difficult to communicate with other sex workers in order to organize. There is also concern with the legitimacy of sex work as a career and an activity that merits formal organizing, largely because of the sexism often present in sex work and the devaluation of sex work as not comparable to other paid labor and employment.