Student Sex Work Toolkit for Staff in Higher Education, Written by Gaynor Trueman, Saskia Hagelberg, Teela Sanders.
The aims of this toolkit are to outline:
• An overview of student sex work and key issues this group face
• The legal status of sex work in the UK
• How to offer appropriate support to student sex workers
• Relevant local and national support services for sex workers in the UK
This toolkit was produced drawing on existing research such as The Student Sex Work Project (2015), the Student Sex Work Brief (2018) and Beyond the Gaze (2017). The Student Sex Work project was a three-year long research project led by Swansea University that culminated in 2015. It aimed to promote awareness and understanding of student sex work, with a view to improving university mechanisms to support this often socially isolated group.
The project utilised an online survey, as well as inviting student sex workers to join the project team as peer researchers. Conducted mainly across Wales, but also including the UK, The Student Sex Work Project had 6,773 responses from students and academic staff to their online survey highlighting the need to HE institutions to specifically include student sex work within policy development, the needs of students involved and the availability or development of non-judgemental support.
The Student Sex Work Brief (2018) was also consulted. Produced by NUS LGBT+ campaign in conjunction with the English Collective of Prostitutes and the Sex Worker Advocacy and Resistance Movement, it used a student survey to gather information. This survey was used to determine the demographic makeup of student sex workers in the UK, and the difficulties they face.
Finally, Beyond the Gaze (2017), the largest online research project ever conducted within the UK highlighting the diverse nature of the sex industry, was referred to. This corroborated other reports which outlined the demographic makeup of student sex workers in the UK and the difficulties that they experienced.
These three academically rigorous sources together paint a reliable picture of the situation of student sex workers in the UK and have informed this toolkit.