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Secret Diary Of A Melbourne Call Girl: September

People often ask me what the various avenues for sex work are, and why I chose the one that I did. This edition I have outlined the four most common options for sex work in Victoria, and their pros and cons. It is important to keep in mind that prostitution falls under state law, meaning that regulations vary throughout the country.

Street

Despite regulated sex work being legal in some parts of Australia, many people still choose to work on the street for one reason or another. Often people engage in this based on knowing someone familiar with the scene. It is common knowledge that there are different spots to pick up Johns whether you’re a woman, a transwoman, a guy, or a cross-dressing guy. There’s an element of danger in all prostitution, but there’s less feeling of legitimacy on the street to keep clients in line. This means that they may demand unsafe sex (it’s one of the reasons clients pick up street workers), and if something goes wrong calling the police is an unappealing option because street workers risk being held legally liable for soliciting. As such, street work is the most dangerous form of prostitution, and there is little support if workers find themselves in a dangerous position. Many people choose to work on the street because they are able to keep 100% of their earnings, and they don’t have to navigate bureaucratic processes. Those who work on the street you need to take all steps possible to protect their safety; the RhED website has a number of useful resources.

Parlour

I work at a parlour, so have a sound knowledge of how the system operates. Getting a job at a parlour is easy; potential employees just have to rock up. Standards do, however, vary. The quality of a parlour makes a huge difference to how safe employees feel at work, and how much they enjoy their job. There are many great aspects of working in a parlour; clients come to the parlour, workers operate in a familiar environment and there are always plentiful safe sex supplies. Probably the best part of working in a parlour, however, is the safety aspect. I know that if at any point I’m with a client and I feel unsafe, I can scream and half a dozen angry transwomen in stiletto heels will come running. On the other hand, managers can make life hell if workers get on their bad side. Furthermore, workers have to wait around for the customers to choose them; this can mean sitting in the parlour all night doing dozen of intros and going home without having had a booking. The house also takes a cut of all earnings.

Escort Agency

Working with an escort agency is similar to working at a parlour in many ways. A manager handles advertising and the organisation of bookings; workers just have to show up. The main advantage is that workers don’t have to leave home unless they have a booking; the agency will ring them when they’ve found a client. For an escort agency, there’s no intro – clients generally see a worker’s ad on the agency’s website, or hear them described by the agency, and book based on that. Working for an agency is, however, not as safe as working in a parlour. Agencies are always aware of where workers are, and workers are required to make a safety call in front of clients when they first arrive, but there is no immediate help on hand if something goes wrong. Agencies take a percentage of earnings in the same manner as parlours.

Private Escort

In Victoria, it is possible for sex workers to work by themselves, or with one other person, as private escorts. For this to be legal, workers need to register an ABN with the Business Licensing Authority. As part of this process, names and details are permanently placed on a government registry, although workers can request to be de-identified once they have left the industry. As with any business, workers are responsible for things like GST, complying with legislation and organising income tax. Working as a private escort can be a great way to earn money, but workers are also responsible for transport costs, safe sex supplies, advertising costs and more. They do, however, get to keep 100% of their earnings, and have the added benefit of being able to organise their clients from home. Safety concerns are similar to those faced by escort agency workers, yet if private escorts get a creepy vibe from a client they can cancel without fear of retribution from a manager. For male sex workers, being a private escort is the predominant means of success in the industry; there isn’t a large enough market to sustain male brothel workers in Melbourne.

As you can see, there are a number of avenues for sex work, each with their own upsides and downsides. For most workers the choice is really a matter of personal preference; none of them is ‘the best option’. And this is not an exhaustive list, it really only covers full-service prostitution. Other forms of sex work include ‘special massage’ or phone sex operators, in addition to adult entertainment services such as pornography. The sex industry is bigger and more diverse than most people first think.

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Alexandra

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