The Sadhana Mahila Sangha works for the welfare of sex workers. It was started in 2011 and registered as an organisation in 2013. Organiser Shakun Mohan supported the group.
The objective behind starting the organisation was to provide support to sex workers when they were being insensitively dragged away by the police while waiting for customers on the streets. This sort of violence is very common.
Initially, Sadhana didn’t even have a specific office space, instead they would work out of another established office. Today, the team also works for the benefit of children of sex workers. The 258 members have been providing legal awareness for these sex workers to handle any cases. They have also received paralegal volunteers training.
One of the members of the Sadhana group reveals that earlier, she had faced violence in many forms. “Using our own saris, we would be tied to a Jeep and made to run behind the vehicle, like a thief. But things are better now.” Earlier, sex workers would be forced to move if they were standing for customers near malls. They would be taken to the police station and many legal cases would be registered against their names.
The workers also said that women who come for sex work don’t always come to have a fun time, they sometimes come because they may be struggling with a lot of financial or family problems. Today, awareness levels are up but the police department still has a long way to go in terms of sensitivity.
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