Traditionally home to female and transgender prostitutes, activists hope the neighborhood’s famous windows can be opened up to all sex workers. The equality campaign is part of Amsterdam’s Gay Pride festival.
Several men on Saturday displayed their half-naked bodies in some of the tall windows that make up Amsterdam’s Red Light District.
The protest is part of a call for equal rights in Europe’s most liberal tourist destination, which is mostly inhabited by female and transgender female sex workers.
Prostitutes rent a room in the De Wallen neighborhood and use one of the 300 or so windows to advertise their services.
But despite making up 5% of the estimated 25,000 sex workers operating in the Netherlands, men are rarely seen.
Bathed in red neon light, hundreds of prostitutes ply their trade from behind windows in the narrow canalside streets of Amsterdam ? and that’s how they want it to stay.
The Dutch capital’s first female mayor has vowed to clean up the notorious red light district and possibly even close some of the famed window booths, but sex workers say they won’t move.
“I have one thing to say to all these people who call us vulnerable, and that is that they don’t know us at all,” said Felicia Anna, chairwoman of Red Light United, a newly-formed union for window-frame sex workers.
From 2020, tourists to Amsterdam will no longer be able to take a tour of the famous red light district . The Red Light district is a historic part of Amsterdam. Photo by Olena Z/Shutterstock The new rules will come into effect on 1 January and will protect the medieval district, also called De Wallen , from the increasing effects of overtourism. READ MORE …