Seminar in Vitebsk on Street Prostitution and Social Work
Rīga 07.11.2016. On November 2-4 a practical seminar took place in Vitebsk bringing together organizations providing assistance to persons providing sexual services in the streets and victims of trafficking in human beings. Social work experience in compliance with different legislations were presented by Caritas Lithuania, Vitebsk Regional Organization of the Belarus Red Cross Society, NGO DiaLogs (LV) and an independent researcher Armands Logins (LV).
The seminar included a visit to a school where volunteers of the Red Cross are prepared at an early age learning about several topics including health and safety in sexual reproduction. Children presented the history of the Red Cross in Belarus and their approach to sexual education with art methods. They believe that the creative learning process is very effective since the participants have to fully devote themselves to the topic.
During presentations a discussion sparked as to which legal model addressing the prostitution is best – Swedish (Nordic) or German. Participants agreed that each country must choose the most suitable model to control the phenomenon stressing that the in the end it is about the people providing sexual services and assistance they need.
Social workers from project partners presented their approach to outreach and client motivation. Though statistics mostly show young females involved in providing sexual services in the streets or on highways, an alarming number of clients are young boys or males who are addicted to hard drugs.
Professionals from all countries agreed that prevention remains a fundamental part of work against prostitution both in schools and to the general society. Some of the most difficult is preventive work with persons providing sexual services to prevent them from becoming victims of human trafficking.
The seminar was organized in Vitebsk under the auspices of the “Red Lights Out” project. Future activities include a training in Gothenburg to observe the Salvation Army practice.
Project “Red Lights Out” is funded by the Nordic Council of Ministers (Agreement No: NCM 15267). The Norden Council of Ministers can not be held accountable for the content of this publication.
Information was prepared by: Reinis Gravitis (Reinis Grāvītis), Project PR specialist, phone: 270 11 868, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org