Rede sobre Trabalho Sexual (RTS)

Who do you work with?

Rede Sobre Trabalho Sexual – RTS – (The Network on Sex Work) was created in 2011 and brings together most of the portuguese organizations that intervene with the phenomenon of sex work (female, male and transgender, as well clients third parties), as well as academics / researchers and sex workers.

How are sex workers involved in your organisation?

RTS integrates and admits in its composition sex workers, all entities, projects or individuals who work directly with sex workers and who identify with their objectives and principles.

Which of NSWP priority areas does your organisation work on?
Oppose the criminalisation and other legal oppression of sex work and support its recognition as work
Critique the trafficking paradigm that conflates representations of sex work, migration, and mobility
Advocate for universal access to health services, including primary health care, HIV and sexual and reproductive health services
Speak out about violence against sex workers, including violence from police, institutions, clients, and intimate partners, while challenging the myth that sex work is inherently gender-based violence
Oppose human rights abuses, including coercive programming, mandatory testing, raids and forced rehabilitation
Challenge stigma and discrimination against sex workers, their families and partners, and others involved in sex work
Advocate for the economic empowerment and social inclusion of sex workers as sex workers
What are the two main challenges that the sex workers you work with face

In Portugal, the commercial sex is decriminalized but procuring is still interdicted under article 169 of the Penal Code. This penal statute addresses individuals who promote or organize sex work, such as owners or tenants of spaces where said services are supplied. This framework leads to a legal void that has been preventing the acknowledgment and legalization of these practices by the Portuguese judicial order. Hence, sex workers do not have access to dignified work conditions, safety and healthcare measures and labor protection.

Describe other areas of your work

RTS principles and positions are based on the commitment to defend Human Rights of sex workers, in particular regarding their involvement in the decisions that most directly affect them, as well as regarding to access to health, dignity of living and working conditions, non-discrimination and protection of migrants.