Sex work is work!
SexWorkCall Romania is a sex workers' collective established at the beginning of 2019, to fight for our rights, against stigma and violence, towards full decriminalization of sex work, and improvement of working and living conditions. Some of us are women, queer, trans, Roma, living with HIV, living with disabilities, survivors, with a history of migrating for sex work, coming from various backgrounds and engaging in different types of sex work. We commit towards working intersectionaly and building solidarity with other people and groups facing marginalization and oppression.
You can read more in English, about our collective here: NSWP featured member.
Our group functions horizontally and centers mutual aid. We keep a working hotline that sex workers can call any time, as we can provide help and/or referrals, medical or legal aid or support of any kind. We have regular meetings in our small office, that sometimes also works as a drop-in center. We distribute condoms, sanitary pads, safer sex materials. We organize public and sex worker only community events, be it film screenings, talks, freeshops, or just gatherings where we relax. We help other colleagues get IDs and documents, offer support when navigating the (sometimes not friendly at all) medical institutions, offer support and advice with starting HRT. We stay in contact both with folks working in Romania, or going abroad to work.
We are also trying to become more visible, have our voices heard, advocate for our rights, as we think our experiences as (migrant) sex workers have been instrumentalized in order to adopt policies that further punish sex workers, affecting the most marginalized of us.
Since we started, we keep running into fellow workers who either are homeless and/or living with HIV, and our office has functioned sometimes as an emergency shelter too. Sex work is still criminalized in Romania, and the most affected are street sex workers, often women and/or Roma and/or trans who are exposed to numerous fines (about 800 eur/night), police abuse, physical and sexual violence and detention.
As a new organization (we have registered officially at the end of June 2019, the first sex workers' organization in Romania!), we do not have the resources to rent a place to host, or to offer that much support (including financially) for people in situation of extreme emergency.
We would therefore like to establish an emergency fund, to use in situations when we, or another colleague, are in a situation of distress.