Sex workers in Belgium launch a new decriminalisation campaign

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Sex workers in Belgium have launched a new campaign calling for the decriminalisation of sex work, and social and legal protection for sex workers. UTSOPI is calling on the Belgian government to create statutes to protect sex workers as self-employed workers, and repeal laws on soliciting advertising and third parties. Federal laws on sex work are interpreted differently at a local level across Belgium, meaning sex work law enforcement currently varies across municipalities. 

UTSOPI has created a list of policy demands ahead of the elections in Belgium on 26th May. They are demanding to be involved as a 'full discussion partner in political debates at all levels of the government', as well as for sex work to be recognised as legitimate work under Belgian law, giving them access to self-employment rights. They are also calling for third party laws to be redefined, as current laws against 'pimping' target collectives of sex workers working together. They are also calling for violence against sex workers to be punishable, and for greater awareness within the police of how to handle working with sex workers and LGBT people. 

You can read more about UTSOPI on their Facebook page, and you can read more about the current laws in Belgium on our Global Mapping of Sex Work Laws page