Wendelijn Vollbehr is a sociology graduate of the VU University of Amsterdam. For her masterthesis she conducted qualitative research on sex worker-led organizations in collaboration with the Red Umbrella Fund. Her research interests are human rights, especially minority rights, marginalization and empowerment.
On what the government should actually do to help sex workers: It would be to not only decriminalise, but to ensure occupational hazards are not there, to ensure safety. Just decriminalisation is not going to help anyone. You’ll have to decriminalise such that safe working conditions can be instituted. So you decriminalise, then institute safe working conditions, then sex workers will start becoming safe. Today when organising and collectivising sex workers, that is the environment that we can see: this is how a decriminalised set up will look like. The collectivisation gives you a support that keeps you safe from petty political criminal elements, goondas. That gives you an environment of safety and being organised to fight violations and violence.