West Coast Cooperative of Sex Industry Professionals

Developing Capacity for Change: Cooperative Exploration


The purpose of this consultation was to capture and summarize the labor and human rights violations that exist in licensed venues in order to develop best practices and health and safety guidelines for indoor sex work for future co-operative development.

Sex workers also participated in co-operative development training to increase knowledge of co-operative business design and to determine whether this kind of business structure would address the violations and limitations of existing venues as well as provide an opportunity to increase sex worker control over their work environments.

The dangerous and exploitative conditions which exist at the street level also manifest in off street venues. These venues, although perceived to be safer, are highly competitive, limited and in some cases breeding grounds for extortion.

To date, sex workers have had little opportunity to try to improve their working conditions and have rarely had community support for such improvements. Safe and healthy work places guiding by human rights and employment standards are an entitlement for all Canadian workers.

This project is the first step toward ensuring that sex workers fall under the same protections.

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