VVD wants a "personal licence" for independent sex workers

The VVD wants to introduce a "personal entrepreneurs license" for prostitutes so that they can work independently and thus be less dependent on the operators of window brothels and sex clubs, Het Parool reports.

At this time these operators hold the licences for women who work in their building. If a prostitute wants to start working, she must first have an interview with the operator. With this personal licence, prostitutes would not necessarily have to go through such an interview each time they switch work places. It would also save much administrative work for both the prostitute and the operator and prevent the prostitute's personal details being in the hands of different operators.

VVD faction leader Marja Ruigrok wants prostitutes to be able to apply for such a licence on a voluntary basis, but only at a municipality designated point, such as the municipal health service. She wants to run a trial with this entrepreneurs licence with the Eigen Raam project - the brothel the Amsterdam municipality wants to open which will be run by the sex workers themselves.

"The entrepreneurs licence confirms the prostitutes' freedom of choice, but also raises a barrier against abuse, because the sex worker has to apply for the license", Ruigrok said according to the newspaper. "That means that he or she really has to choose the profession."

Proud, the association for sex workers, is cautiously optimistic about the idea. "The current rules make it unnecessarily difficult for independent sex workers.", Mariska Majoor, chairman of Proud, said to Het Parool. "If such a licence can put an end to that, it is a good thing."