Sex worker during the corona crisis: your options

This information is provided by

Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK

Since 15 January 2022, sex workers are again allowed to work, subject to conditions. The government announced this on 14 January 2022.

Most lockdown measures relaxed as from 26 January 2022

On 25 January, the government announced a relaxation of most lockdown measures. For more information, read The coronavirus and your company.

All contact professionals, including sex workers, have been allowed to practice their work again since 15 January. They may do so between 05:00 and 22:00 hours. The general rules for maintaining 1.5 metres and wearing face masks do not apply. It is therefore even more important that you adhere strictly to the rules about ventilation and washing.

Sex work is legal in the Netherlands

In the Netherlands, you are allowed to practice as a sex worker. The government offers you the same protection as it does other professionals. Make sure your residence papers are in order. Find out more on the Government.nl website.

Are you in financial difficulties due to corona restrictions? If you are a self-employed professionial and registered with KVK as a business, you can apply for Bbz at your municipality. This is a special type of benefit for zzp'ers.

Welfare for opt-in sex workers

Do you work for a sex club or escort service? Then chances are you are neither an employee, nor a self-employed professional. If you are an opt-in sex worker, you probably have an agreement with the operator of the sex club or escort service about working hours and payment. If the operator pays your social benefits and taxes, and you receive a net sum for your work, you are not protected against dismissal. All this means that you are not eligible for Tozo, nor for unemployment benefit. You can, however, apply for welfare through werk.nl (in Dutch). In some cases, you can apply for welfare in the city where you live.

Welfare and residence status

If you are staying in the Netherlands with a residence permit, or even if you are an EU citizen with a right to reside, applying for welfare may affect your residence status. Under the exceptional circumstances that we are in, the government will be more lenient in checking your residence status, and if you apply for a new residence permit.

Not entitled to benefits

If you are or were not entitled to unemployment benefit, welfare, Tozo or NOW, for instance because you have no legal residence status, here’s what you can do:
  • Check with the municipality where you live if they can help you.
  • Are you legally allowed to work? Then consider working from a distance, for instance via a webcam.
Find more information on corona and sex work on the Soa Aids Nederland websites prostitutie.nl and prostitutiegoedgeregeld.nl (available in several languages).

This information is provided by

Netherlands Chamber of Commerce, KVK