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Presentation Jasmine Project - combating violence against sex workers

Document number
28 May 2019
Presentation Jasmine Project - combating violence against sex workers
Sarah-Marie Maffesoli - Médecins du Monde
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Document type(s)
Meeting Documentation/Conference Reports,
sex workers violence compensation safe reporting

Sarah-Marie Maffesoli  presented the project Jasmine addressing violence against sex workers, which she coordinates. Among others they support sex workers (victims of THB and victims of violence) in claiming compensation. She explained work done in order to support sex workers to report violence/crimes (which includes the claim for compensation). The project has ensured the establishment of alert and information web sites in 10 languages and a reporting questionnaire. It was noted that there are still many obstacles related to safe reporting for sex workers; partly as a result of current legislation addressing pimping and prostitution.
Regarding compensation for victims of violence, it is very difficult for sex workers -  especially when they are undocumented  - to get compensation for all the damages, in particular also compensation for unpaid wages. As sex workers are self-employed, they can claim in theory unpaid money from clients through the commercial court - in Germany for example, but in practice this is not really possible. She explained that when a sex worker is a victim of rape and she needs to stop working for a while, she won’t get any compensation for the economic damage. ‘The fact is that in order to get unpaid wages or compensation for economic damage, you need to have a lot of evidence proving lost earnings, which most of sex workers don’t have’. Further only in cases of identification as a trafficked person, the victim can access residency and other benefits; sex workers that faced other offences such as rape, do not have access to residency.