Believe it or now, sex workers are still considered workers even though the Malaysia laws do not regard them as workers or equal members of society. As a result, they are often on the receiving end of discrimination, stigma and injustices.
Recently, the 我们是马来西亚人 We are Malaysians Facebook page shared a video showing how someone decide to ride around Chow Kit, Kuala Lumpur while teasing these sex workers by singing a song that is deemed humiliating to them.
In the video, the sex workers could be seen turning away when they notice the camera. One of them even threw a packet of drinks at the driver who embarrass them.
Meanwhile, netizens were quick to condemn the driver for his actions and defended the sex workers. Many also pointed out that these sex workers did not choose to live such a life but were forced into it due to the difficulties they are facing.
“I don’t think they wanted their life in such situation, we won’t know the story behind.. Feel bad and sympathy, leave them alone.. Discriminating them is not funny,” a netizen said.
“You were lucky you are not born like them. Respect, they are also human beings,” another netizen said.
Prostitution in Malaysia
Prostitution and its related activities such as soliciting and brothels are illegal. In the two states of Terengganu and Kelantan, Muslims convicted of prostitution may be punishable with public caning.
Due to legal issues, sex workers in Malaysia face many issues in their daily life, which includes discrimination and violence, and a lack of access to proper healthcare and support.
While it is easy to criticise sex workers for their decision to join the industry, people seldom question the reasons why someone would decide to be a sex worker. The reasons can be numerous and varied, but the most common ones is poverty.
Hence, instead of blatantly criticising them, we should instead help them to get on their feet.
What do you think about this? Share your thoughts!