Posted on: November 5, 2011
Mariska Majoor (born in Hilversum in 1968) – a former prostitute: “If someone is forcing a young girl to work in the Red Light District, they will tell the prostitute that if she tries to escape they will kill their family. So when a young prostitute believes that, she will stay doing prostitution till the day that her pimp will set her free or till the day she feels strong enough to escape. In these kind of situations, it’s pretty hard to help those young girls, because other people can put into danger when helping her escape.
Organizations which are specialized in helping girls in these kind of situations are aware of this, so the best thing to do is to keep in touch with those young prostitutes and let them know that there are possibilities to help them. But these possibilites can only be used, with approval of the prostitute.
Usually when I hear from somebody who is forced to work in the Red Light District, I hear this from customers. So I always find it really important….to stay in touch with the customer because it’s a free source of important information. If those customers are having sex with a girl who is working against her will, most of the time the customer will feel responsible for that. And they don’t want that, so they are willing to help them… Sometimes those customers will come to The Prostitution Information Center to inform this organization about the situation.
It’s possible to be trafficked, to be forced into this business, but at the same time the young girls will work in legal situations and visible for everybody. So the police can check there ID’s and ages, but not if they are being trafficked”
At the age of sixteen, Mariska Majoor decided to start working as a prostitute herself. After a few years she stopped and decided to use her experiences as a sex worker to inform other people about prostitution in the Netherlands. In 2014, she co-founded PROUD – a Dutch union for sex workers – based in the heart of Amsterdam.