For over 20 years, the women of Benin City, a town in the state of Edo in the
south-central part of Nigeria, have traveled to Italy to work in the sex trade. Every year, successful ones recruit younger girls to follow in their steps. Most migrant women, including those who end up in the sex industry, have made a clear decision to leave home and take their chances overseas. They are headstrong and ambitious women who migrate in order to escape situations that affect their habitat and livelihood.
Many migrants have sensibly identified Europe as where the money is. They have varying experiences, but their problems are more to do with the wider cultural complexities they encounter than the specifics of their chosen trade.
What emerges is a sub-human condition these people live.
These workstead pits of dirt, tarps and abuse are shrines to the shortcomings of globalisation and the social safety net.
It is becoming increasingly clear that the economic and social crises are degrading the
conditions of everyday life for a vast range of people in many parts of the world and that the global elites’ answers to these crises cannot provide any solutions to these problems. Prohibition and criminalization of migration can only worsens work conditions, making sex workers more vulnerable to police harassment and exposing them and indeed all migrants to the risk of deportation.