Disability and Sexuality Forum 2010 - Christian Vega
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Disability and Sexuality Forum 2010 - Christian Vega

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Presentation by Christian Vega from field - Disability and Sexuality Forum held on Thursday 18 March at Darebin Arts and Entertainment Centre, Preston.

Presentation by Christian Vega from field - Disability and Sexuality Forum held on Thursday 18 March at Darebin Arts and Entertainment Centre, Preston.

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Disability and Sexuality Forum 2010 - Christian Vega Disability and Sexuality Forum 2010 - Christian Vega Presentation Transcript

  • Sex Workers and People with a Disability: A symbiosis towards humanity By Christian Vega
  • Presentation Overview
    • Who Is RhED?
    • Overview of the Victorian Sex Industry
    • Capacities and Limitations
    • Types of sex work: pros and cons
    • Strategies and approaches towards better access
    • Human Rights
    • Working with Special Needs Clients: Christian’s perspective
    • Question Time and concluding comments
  • RhED in the sex industry is:
    • a statewide program
    • for sex workers and their clients, family & community
      • brothel, private, escort - legal
      • street sex workers
      • male, female & transgender workers
    • outreach based with a drop in component
    • focused on health, wellbeing and advocacy for sex workers
  • Services available through RhED:
    • Education – STIs and BBVs
    • Distribution of safe sex supplies
    • Information and Referral Service for the Sex Industry
    • Community Safety Initiatives- Ugly Mug reports
    • RED magazine
    • Development & distribution of educational resources to raise awareness around relevant legal issues
    • Translated educational materials (CALD)
  • Overview of the Victorian Sex Industry
    • Victoria’s Sex Industry is regulated by the Prostitution Control Act. There are 3 legal modes of sex work:
    • Brothels
    • Escort Agencies
    • Private Workers
    • Each mode presents it on set of advantages and disadvantages for disabled clients
  • Capacities and Limitations: A Sex Worker Can’t Do Everything
    • Sex workers provide sexual services
    • Some sex workers may not be prepared to see clients with a disability
    • Sex workers aren’t girlfriends/boyfriends
    • A Sex worker’s work is finished at the end of the booking
  • Capacities and Limitations: Sex Work Is About Love Too It’s OK to Pay By Chanelle Sometimes sex work is about being gentle with someone’s need for touch. Sometimes it’s about being kind towards a man who’s ashamed of their body. Sometimes it’s about being friendly and fun with someone who’s lonely. Sometimes it’s about holding someone’s vulnerability very lightly in your hands. Sometimes it’s about making someone feel desired and appreciated. Sometimes it’s about sharing intimacy cirgarettes and a laugh. Sex work is a lot of things… … and sometimes it’s about love.
  • Access Options
    • The Pros
    • And
    • The Cons
  • Going to a Brothel
    • Pros:
    • Provides a venue for the service to take place
    • Can be the less expensive option
    • Offers a selection of service providers, some more comfortable with working with disabled clients
    • An opportunity for a special outing
    • Cons:
    • More challenging for low mobility clients
    • More demanding on the carer
    • Limited ability to negotiate services that will be provided
    • Time must be taken in bed transfers, undressing, showering, etc.
  • Calling an Escort Agency
    • Pros:
    • Allows client to remain in an environment they are comfortable in and familiar with
    • More opportunity to explain the needs of the client and prepare the worker
    • Time can be saved through preparation
    • Cons:
    • Can be more expensive
    • Must make the venue sex worker accessible
    • Less scope to negotiate services
  • Seeing Private Workers
    • Pros:
    • Competitively priced
    • More ability to build an ongoing, progressive service relationship
    • Greater range of skills and services and a wider scope to negotiate these
    • Greater Privacy
    • Cons:
    • More leg work to find one that would be appropriate
    • Can be less reliable
    • What happens when the sex worker retires?
  • Street-based and Other Unregulated Sex Work
    • Pros:
    • Most likely to be cheaper
    • Can be a quick, low fuss transaction to organise
    • Is more anonymous
    • Cons:
    • It is illegal
    • There are barriers to protection/contingencies should something go wrong
    • Too many opportunities for exploitation
  • Strategies Towards Better Access
    • Plan, plan, plan: -to the minute of how the booking will go -what to do should something go wrong -the role of the carer
    • Ask heaps of questions and establish clear expectations
    • Give the worker/agent as much information as possible
    • Include sex as part of the person’s lifestyle management plan
    • Call RhED for a Referral
  • Human Rights
    • Australia has an established Sex Worker Rights movement
    • Sex Workers see the Disability Rights Movement as an equal, allied movement
    • The right to sex work and the right to access sex workers are human rights
    • Both Sex Workers and People with Disabilities are self-determining, strong individuals who do not necessarily need anyone speaking on their behalf
  • Sex Workers Working With People With A Disability “ My shock was that… [sex workers] could be people with such compassion. Yes, the [sex workers] were in it for the money. But they also chose this work and made the choice of working with clients with a disability because that all people crave affection and intimate contact. They also understand the limitations, the dangers and the risks involved in a client/sex worker relationship.”
  • Working with Special Needs Clients: Christian’s Experience
  • Key Websites
    • Touching Base: www.touchingbase.org.au
    • RhED: www.sexworker.org.au
    • Scarlet Alliance: www.scarletalliance.org.au
  • Question Time Christian Vega Health Educator and Support Worker    for Male and Transgender Sex Workers RhED Program 10 Inkerman St. St. Kilda, 3182 T: 1800 458 752 E: [email_address] F: 9534 4492 W: www.sexworker.org.au