Trans*sexworks is a peer to peer (Have a look at the Glossary) support structure and a network for and made up of Trans*sex workers. Trans*sex workers in Germany, and in many other countries are often excluded from support and counseling structures because of a lack of services that fit their needs: we have various trans*specific issues which are often not on the radar. We are aiming to fulfill the needs of those with the biggest issues, on a peer to peer basis. These things affect sex workers of all classes, whether you work indoors or outdoors, with or without Internet, if you are trans*male or a transwoman or whatever self definition fits you. We can only discuss HIV-prevention and harm reduction if we create a living situation which gives sex workers the chance to work on these areas. As long there is less or no chance to say “no” to some clients, as long we struggle to create surviving strategies, there isn’t the foundation for it. A successful HIV-prevention and harm reduction has to start with creating a good living situation and the possibility for legal work for trans*sex workers. Of course, we also need strategies to fight transphobia and homophobia on a daily basis. Often these discriminations are connected to intersectional identities and/or oppressions of the workers.
The base of our work is a survey on the needs and situations of Trans*sex workers. If needed we organize translations and payment for the workers whose time we taking up when completing the survey. We go to their workplaces (Street, bar, brothel, online…) and invite them to take part. When data collection is complete, we plan to analyze the data and use it to work out how to make meaningful change to the lives of Trans*sex workers.
Structures and institutions who deal with Trans*sex workers are often insecure around the needs and words which are connected to TSW. That’s why we also offer to pass by and teach on the subject. Additionally we are advising Trans*persons who want to start working in the sex trade to give them the basic information they need for work.
Until 2019 Transsexworks will be part of “Transvisible”(1). We would like to create a long term structure which exists after the funding of Transvisible is completed.
(1) Transsexworks is a project by TransInterQueer e.V. (TrIQ) and part of the larger TrIQ project Trans* Visible. Trans* Visible is mainly funded by the Federal Ministery of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth. Thanks a lot to Hannchen Mehrzweck Stiftung for their kind support.