Panel proposes housing, insurance for sex workers

Setting aside Rs 100 crore for life insurance to one lakh sex workers, Rs 200 crore annual fund for houses to 1,000 persons, formation of district units to prevent human trafficking are some of the recommendations of a committee on the condition of sex workers, devadasis and sexual minorities.

The committee submitted its report to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Monday.

Committee chairperson and MLC Jayamala said sex workers and sexual minorities cannot access government resources due to social stigma. “The 22-member panel conducted studies in 126 taluks in 30 districts of the state before tabulating data and making its recommendations,” she said.

The panel included activists working for upliftment of sex workers, academicians and social scientists.

“The panel met 3,000 sex workers and reached out to 11,100 of them through questionnaires. It helped us understand first hand the horrific world of exploitation,” she said.

The actor-turned-politician, however, refused to divulge details of the recommendations saying it was left to the government to reveal them.

A member of the committee told DH on condition of anonymity that they have urged the government to sanction Rs 733 crore for various schemes to uplift the exploited women. The panel also recommended allocation of Rs 48 crore to increase monthly pension of HIV infected from Rs 1,000 to Rs 5,000, and providing vocational training and Rs 300 a day stipend to help exploited women become self reliant.

Noting that most of the children of sex workers drop out of schools, the panel has sought allocation of Rs 30 crore for schemes to bring them back to schools.

The chief minister assured the committee that the state government would consider the report seriously.

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