No-one saw 2020 coming. There was no warning, no practice run, no handbook on how to respond. But respond we did. All across Europe and Central Asia our members rallied - working in and with their communities to create the safety net that government and official services could not, and would not, provide. Isolated, but never alone, we are proud of the way our team and the sex worker community stepped-up, and of the strength and resilience they showed as the world went into lockdown. But 2020 wasn’t all about COVID-19.
From membership development to advocacy, campaigns and fundraising, this last year has seen us take past conversations forward, and make important progress in areas of health, migration and victims’ rights. Despite the pandemic, we have created new opportunities to advance our mission, with 2020 a catalyst for upcoming programmes in antiracism (in solidarity with the Black Lives Matters movement), mental health and digital rights.
Silence is not an option. The last 12 months have shown us just how much power and resolve there is in our community, and how much work still needs to be done to protect the human, health and labour rights of sex workers everywhere. Sex work is work. We will not stop until our voice is recognised, and sex workers are able to earn a living free from the threat of criminalisation, discrimination, violence and coercion.