Exploiters most often target lone sex workers and rely on them not wanting to report what is happening to them, for fear they will also be criminalised.
This page is to provide information those that work in the sex industry about safety and privacy tips, what to do if they are a victim of exploitation, and also what support is available, locally or online, if they are reluctant to report these incidents to the police.
It will also provide links about local and national services that can offer support to sex workers.
This video showcases the stories of six current and former sex workers to highlight the working conditions of sex workers in the 21st century.
This film was produced as part of the Beyond the Gaze research project. Beyond the Gaze is the largest study to date of UK online sex work, examining the working conditions, safety and policing of the industry by researchers from the Universities of Leicester and Strathclyde
MASH (Manchester Action on Street Health) offers help to women who are sex working on the streets; sex working in saunas or massage parlours; sex working independently (as escorts); doing web cam or phone sex work. They are based in Manchester but offer support to women working across Greater Manchester.
If you think you or someone you know is being exploited, you can report to the police on 101, or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
You can also get advice from the Modern Slavery Helpline by calling 0800 121 700
National Ugly Mugs is a pioneering National organisation which provides greater access to justice and protection for sex workers who are often targeted by dangerous individuals but are frequently reluctant to report these incidents to the police. These offenders are often serial sexual predators who pose a huge risk to the public as a whole.
To improve the safety of sex workers, to prevent crime and to bring to justice more offenders who target sex workers. Please visit their website for more information and how to join.
Beyond the Gaze was a three year study of the safety and working conditions of online sex work in the UK and is the largest study to date of this sector. By online we mean those that use digital technology to run their business and specifically to safety screen and protect their privacy. Whilst their information is primarily for those who offer face to face services, the safety and privacy tips can be helpful to other sectors of the industry. They also have a section on camming.
MASH are a charity that offer free and confidential support for women who are sex working in Manchester. They have a drop in centre, a sexual health clinic, can help with counselling and any issues with addiction to drugs. They run a MASH van, this is an outreach service that sex workers can utilise without having to call into the main building. They offer condoms, a needle exchange, chat with a counsellor or just a hot cup of tea.
The Men's Room is an arts and social charity that works creatively to empower men aged 18-30. We support male sex workers, homeless men and men involved in the criminal justice system. We offer them opportunities to get involved in high quality arts projects whilst accessing one to one support for challenges they face in their everyday lives.
Our work engages young men experiencing multiple disadvantage, including homeless men, sex workers, men with experience of sexual exploitation, offenders, and men struggling with mental health problems and substance misuse. We work with artists on a diverse range of projects throughout the year, whilst also offering outreach services and personalised support to our service users.
If you are a victim of crime
Contact us in confidence
In a non emergency you can contact Greater Manchester Police in confidence on 101
In an emergency
If you, or someone you know is in danger, always dial 999
For further advice about reporting crime to the police visit The National Ugly Mugs website police and courts page