The report suggests that in spite of Asia's economic crisis, the economic and social forces driving the sex industry show no s of slowing down, particularly in light of rising unemployment in the region. According to Ms. Lin Lim, the ILO official who directed the study, "If the evidence from the recession of the mids is any indication, then it is very likely that women who lose their jobs in manufacturing and other service sectors and whose families rely on their remittances may be driven to enter the sex sector.
Yet, there is no clear legal stance nor effective public best countries for prostitutes or programmes to deal with prostitution in any of the countries. Governments are constrained not only because of the best countries for prostitutes and complexity of the issues involved but also because the circumstances of the sex workers can range widely from freely chosen and remunerative employment to debt bondage and virtual slavery.
The countries have, however, taken action to eliminate child prostitution, an activity the ILO report caracterizes as "a serious human rights violation and an intolerable form of child labour. The report, entitled The Sex Sector: The economic and social bases of prostitution in Southeast Asiais based on detailed studies of prostitution and commercial sex work in four countries - Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand.
The authors of the ILO report emphasize that the scrutiny of the sex-sector of these four countries does not suggest that they have a unique prostitution problem or that their social, moral or economic values are especially aberrant. In best countries for prostitutes, the national case studies in the report "are illustrative of the situation in many countries," and prostitution and its attendant problems are universal.
The report says best countries for prostitutes although the exact of working prostitutes in these countries is impossible to calculate due to the illegal or clandestine nature of the work, anywhere between 0. In Malaysia, the estimated figures for working prostitutes range from 43, tobut the higher figure is more probable, according to the ILO analysis. In the Philippines, estimates range fromtobut the likelihood is that there are nearly half a million prostitutes in the country. In Thailand, the Ministry of Public Health survey best countries for prostitutes 65, prostitutes in but unofficial sources put the figure betweentoThere are also tens of thousands of Thai and Filipino prostitutes working in other countries.
The prostitutes are mainly women, but there are also male, transvestite and child prostitutes. If we include the owners, managers, pimps and other employees of the sex establishments, the related entertainment industry and some segments of the tourism industry, the of workers earning a living best countries for prostitutes or indirectly from prostitution would be several millions. A study by the Ministry of Public Health of Thailand found that of a total ofworkers in some 7, establishments where sexual services could be obtained, only 64, were sex workers; the rest were support staff including cleaners, waitresses, cashiers, parking valets and security guards.
A Malaysian study lists occupations with links to the sex sector as medical practitioners who provide regular health checks for the prostitutesoperators of food stalls in best countries for prostitutes vicinity of sex establishments, vendors of cigarettes and liquor, and property owners who rent premises to providers of sexual services. In the Philippines, establishments known to be involved in the sex sector best countries for prostitutes special tourist agencies, escort services, hotel room service, saunas and health clinics, casas or brothels, bars, beer gardens, cocktail lounges, cabarets and special best countries for prostitutes.
The sex sector in the four countries is estimated to for anywhere best countries for prostitutes 2 to 14 per cent of Gross Domestic Product GDPand the revenues it generates are crucial to the livelihoods and earnings potential of millions of workers beyond the prostitutes themselves. Government authorities also collect substantial revenues in areas where prostitution thrives, illegally from bribes and corruption, but legally from licensing fees and taxes on the many hotels, bars, restaurants and game rooms that flourish in its wake.
While many current studies highlight the tragic stories of individual prostitutes, especially of women and children deceived or coerced into the practice, the ILO surveys point out that many workers entered for pragmatic reasons and with a general sense of awareness of the choice they were making. About one-half of Malaysian prostitutes interviewed for the study said it was "friends who showed the way to earn money easily," a pattern that is replicated in the other study countries.
Sex work is usually better paid than most of the options available to young, often uneducated women, in spite of the stigma and danger attached to the work. In all four of the countries studied, sex work provided ificantly higher earnings than other forms of unskilled labour. In many cases, sex work is often the only viable alternative for women in communities coping with poverty, unemployment, failed marriages and family obligations in the nearly complete absence of social best countries for prostitutes programmes.
For single mothers with children, it is often a more flexible, remunerative and less time-consuming option than factory or service work.
Surveys within sex establishments revealed that while a best countries for prostitutes proportion of sex workers claimed they wanted to leave the occupation if they could, many expressed concern about the earnings they risked losing if they changed jobs. Even so, the surveys also reveal that in the experience of most best countries for prostitutes the women surveyed, prostitution is one of the most alienating forms of labour. Over 50 per cent of the women surveyed in Philippine massage parlours said they carried out their work "with a heavy heart," and 20 per cent said they were "conscience stricken because they still considered sex with customers a sin.
Surveys of women working as masseuses indicated that 34 per cent of them explained their choice of work as necessary to support poor parents, 8 per cent to support siblings and 28 per cent to support husbands or boyfriends.
Major employment and revenue generator
More than 20 per cent said the job was well paid, but only 2 per cent said it was easy work and only 2 per cent claimed to enjoy the work. Over a third reported that they had been subject to violence or harassment, most commonly from the police but also from city officials and gangsters. A survey among workers in massage parlours and brothels in Thailand revealed that "most of the women entered the sex industry for economic reasons.
Almost all of those surveyed stated that they knew the type of work they would be doing before taking up the job. Almost one-half of the brothel workers and one-quarter of the best countries for prostitutes parlour workers had ly worked in agriculture. A further 17 per cent of the masseuses said they had ly worked in home or cottage industries and 11 per cent had been domestic servants. The rationale, in Thailand and elsewhere, was that in exchange for engaging in an occupation which is disapproved of by most of society and which carries known health risks, "the workers expected to obtain an income greater than they could earn in other occupations.
Studies of prostitution in Indonesia consistently show relatively high earnings compared with other best countries for prostitutes in which women with low levels of education are likely to find work. In Malaysia, earnings in the sex sector are higher relative to earnings in other types of unskilled employment.
One such sex worker explained "I can earn enough to look after my two young children. It is so difficult to get someone to look after them when you work elsewhere. Here I only come when I need the money and it is easy to find a babysitter for just one day. All four country studies point out, however, that the information was gathered from establishments and individual prostitutes willing to be surveyed.
The picture is incomplete on those establishments, especially brothels, which virtually enslave the workers and on those women and children who are the victims of serious exploitation and abuse. The ILO stresses that whereas adults could choose sex work as an occupation, children are invariably victims of prostitution. Commercial sexual exploitation is such a serious form of violence against children that best countries for prostitutes are lifelong and life-threatening consequences.
As with adult prostitution, it is not possible to have precise figures on the extent of child prostitution. A report put the of child victims of prostitution at 75, in the Philippines. In Thailand, a estimate was between 30, to 35, child prostitutes. In Indonesia, a survey found that one-tenth of the prostitutes were below 17 years and of those best countries for prostitutes were older, more than a fifth said they had started working before the age of In Malaysia, more than half of those "rescued" from various sex establishments were under 18 years.
ificantly, the country studies encountered few, if any, women working as prostitutes in the towns or villages where they grew up. Prostitutes tend to be procured from rural areas or small towns for the cities or, as young, first-time job seekers new to urban areas, are vulnerable to being drawn into the sex sector.
The ILO report also cites available evidence to suggest that there has been a rise in international trafficking of women and children for the sex sector. Underground syndicates operate "ruthlessly efficient" networks, often with official connections, to recruit, transport, sell women and children across national borders.
An estimated 20, Burmese women work in the sex sector in Thailand; nearly all are illegal immigrants at constant risk of arrest and deportation and 50 per cent are estimated to be HIV positive. In India, someNepalese women work as prostitutes, with an additional 5, Nepalese trafficked to the country each year.
An estimatedwomen from Bangladesh best countries for prostitutes been trafficked to Pakistan over the past decade and thousands more to India. The report also identifies the feminization of labour migration as one of the major factors fuelling growth in the sex sector.
It says that some 80 per cent of the Asian female migrant workers legally entering Japan in the s were "entertainers", a best countries for prostitutes euphemism for prostitutes. Most are from the Philippines and Thailand.
Thai women work as prostitutes throughout Asia as well as in Australia, Europe and the United States. Flows of prostitutes throughout south and southeast Asia are described as almost "commuter-like" in their regularity and complexity.
More in travel
The report says that "measures targeting the sex sector have to consider moral, religious, health, human rights and criminal issues in addressing a phenomenon that is mainly economic in nature. The report states categorically that it is outside the purview of the ILO to take a stand on whether countries should legalize prostitution. While fully acknowledging the complexity of cutting through the many ambivalent, inconsistent and contradictory perceptions swirling around prostitution, the report does, however, offer some recommendations on developing a policy stance.
ISBN Price: 35 Swiss francs. Major Employment and Revenue Generator The report says that although the exact of working prostitutes in these countries is impossible to calculate due to the illegal or clandestine nature of the work, anywhere between 0. Economic Incentives Drive the Industry While many current studies highlight the tragic stories of individual prostitutes, especially of women and children deceived or coerced into the practice, the ILO surveys point out that many workers entered for pragmatic reasons and with a general sense of awareness of the choice they were making.
The Child Victims of Prostitution The ILO stresses that whereas adults could choose sex work as an occupation, children are best countries for prostitutes victims of prostitution. Prostitution and the Feminization of Migration ificantly, the country studies encountered few, if any, women working as prostitutes in the towns or villages where they grew up. What is to be done? Target child prostitution for elimination: The ILO says that entirely separate measures need to be envisaged for adult prostitution versus child prostitution.
Best countries for prostitutes are invariably victims best countries for prostitutes prostitution whereas adults could choose sex work as an occupation. Recognize the variety of circumstances prevailing among prostitutes and eliminate abuses: The ILO study says that some prostitutes freely choose sex work, others are pressured by poverty and dire economic circumstances, and still others are coerced or deceived into prostitution.
For those who have been subject to force, deception or violence, the priority should be their rescue, rehabilitation and reintegration into society. It is also important to recognize that policies for the promotion of tourism, the export of female labour for overseas employment, the promotion of rural-urban migration to provide cheap labour for export-oriented industrialization, etc. Measures should also be directed towards clients, especially since the chain of transmission from the sex sector to the population involves clients who also have unprotected sex with their spouses or others.