How Amsterdam is quietly closing down windows in the Red Light District (and hopes you won't notice)
A couple of years ago we saw the end of Project 1012, the gentrification project of Amsterdam's Red Light District, which aimed to close down window brothels and coffeeshops. The narrative frame that was used was that closing these businesses down would help fight crime, but in reality had nothing to do with this. Also a report made by the independent Rekenkamer of Amsterdam concluded crime did not deminish, but that the position of sex workers had only been worsened because of a significant drop in legal workplaces, leaving many sex workers to go underground into illegal prostitution.

But for those who thought this project was over and done with, and that sex workers would benefit from the new city council of Amsterdam, you've got it all wrong. As the city is still continuing the project long after it's officially finish. Because as of the 1st of January until the summer another 37 window brothels will be closed down, still part of the Project 1012 gentrification. The city was wise enough to arrange these closures in silent, as not to attract any attention to itself and create outrage, as the city has tried to give itself a more sex work friendly and inclusive face. But this is just a pure diversion from the fact that they are still closing down windows as part of Project 1012, and even want to close down more windows in the future as part of a new project to make the Red Light District 'less over crowded'.

Meanwhile sex workers who's windows will be closed down as part of Project 1012 will not receive any compensation whatsoever or any alternative workplaces. The city is hereby pushing these sex workers (yet again) into the illegal sector, which has proven to be much less safe for sex workers, due to a high risk of both violence against sex workers as well as human trafficking. It's safe to say closing down these windows will increase trafficking and abuse against sex workers, and the city is directly responsible for this.

Now the city of Amsterdam hopes of course that the closing of these windows from the 1st of January will happen silently and will go unnoticed, as it might damage their sex work friendly image. I hope it doesn't, as the city of Amsterdam has not changed one bit in the last decade, and is still out to destroy the lives of sex workers in benefit of real estate investors who will pay a pretty price for all these empty window brothels who just happen to be located in expensive historical real estate buildings. In short, the city is literally selling out women in favor of financial profits over real estate.

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