Ask an escort; Gina 25 is an Irish escort in Belfast:

How long have you been a Belfast escort? I started working in the sex industry in London five years ago, I worked in lap dancing clubs and did a bit of work as a stripper, but the real money was in seeing the men that visited the strip club afterwards, which wasn’t allowed.

Do you remember the first time you had sex for money? Being in the sex industry in London you meet lots of girls in different areas of the business, Irish escorts, girls who were adult webcam girls, girls who worked the red light districts as prostitutes, girls that worked in massage flats and so on. A friend offered me a day in a massage flat in Belfast, she told me I would have to have sex with the punters, oral without condom, and a lot of girlfriend experience which involves kissing and cuddling with the clients. I was really nervous when the first punter came to the flat, he wanted me to suck his cock and to lick my pussy in the 69 position, after that he wanted to fuck me doggy style. He was very nice and gave me a big tip. That was the route I took into being a fulltime Irish escort.

What made you want to work as a Belfast escort? Being an escort, which is where I worked, there was a lot of competition and I was feeling a bit homesick so I went back to Belfast and set up my own Belfast massage parlour.

As an Irish escort in Belfast do you worry that your friends will find out you are in the sex trade? All my close friends know I work as an escort, anyone else that knows me wouldn’t be shocked at all. 

Would you work as an adult webcam girl? Absolutely, some girls who cam between clients can double their income by letting guys see them first on a video call.

Do you think the webcam girls could affect the escort trade? No, I think that the guys who go on adult webcam sites will eventually want the real thing. What’s good about the webcams site is that a guy can have a session with a webcam girl and then go and visit her, so really it can only enhance the number of clients that an escort will see. Also, the punters that see girls on webcams first will become regular clients, it’s a great way for escorts to make extra money.

As an Irish escort in Belfast would you ever have sex with a client without using a condom? There are a lot of requests from clients to have bareback sex, it’s not something I have done yet, but I never say never.

Do clients ask escorts to dress in different uniforms? All the time, I have a selection of outfits that clients can choose from, nurses uniform, schoolgirl, policewoman. The most popular is the schoolgirl uniform, again I suppose it’s a role play thing, going back to what I said earlier, forbidden fruit tastes sweeter.

Do escorts in Belfast make more money than escorts in London? It always depends on the girl, all my bookings come from the internet where guys can see my pictures, so they know what I look like before they come to me. I would say that any good looking girl can make money as an escort wherever she works, I know an Asian escort in Manchester who is a beautiful looking girl and she makes more money than an Asian escort in London, so it really depends on the girl. I make a good living as a Belfast escort.

Do some escorts put fake images on websites to lure clients in? It’s a big problem, the term for this practice is called ‘bait and switch’ where an escort will put fake glamorous pictures on her profile purporting to be her, the client turns up and is disappointed to find that the girl in the images is not the girl he has come to see. There is a new video call system called where a client can video call the escort to make sure she is the girl in the photos.

Should Belfast escorts be decriminalised? By definition, sex workers are people that perform sexual services in exchange for money (Cambridge English Dictionary, 1995). Not all sex workers, like prostitutes, engage in direct sexual activity for money, such as strippers and phone sex operators. So technically, working in the sex industry, having intercourse or not, is still a job profession, despite the taboo. In history, sex work is considered to be the oldest job profession and it has considered having been in practice since ancient times. Prostitution was widely known in areas like Greece and Egypt.

Is there a difference between an Irish prostitute and an escort? Prostitutes in Greece were also known as "Hetaera". Sex workers in ancient times were seen as high members of society because of their training. However, the attitudes towards sex workers changed throughout history. It wasn't until the 16th century when attitudes shifted and prostitution became regulated and restricted women's bodily autonomy. Attitudes towards prostitution suddenly shifted from acceptance to negative and hostile. So, why are escort agencies in Belfast criminalised in the first place? The topic of sex workers is still difficult to discuss because of people's varied perspectives on it. Traditional conservative people consider the performance of sexual services for money immoral and challenge values of the traditional nuclear family (, 2004-2020).

Would legalising sex workers reduce the criminal element? These people believe that the practice of prostitution and other sex services should be banned. The act of sexual services can be also linked with organised crime such as managing a brothel and pimping out prostitutes, which are both illegal in the UK. Other issues come into play as well, including drug crimes and unfortunately, sex trafficking. Why should sex workers be decriminalised? Firstly, I should mention that although prostitution is legal in the UK, it is not regulated, meaning that Belfast escorts are often exposed to danger in society due to their profession.

Are escorts in Belfast given the same rights as anyone else? The criminalisation of prostitution makes sex workers vulnerable to violence, like rape, assault and murder. Perpetrators may view sex workers as an easy target because they are unlikely to seek help from services such as the NHS and police officers. Sex workers are unlikely to go to the police for help because officers tend to expose sex workers to harassment, bribing and even rape. Sex workers are also put off reporting attacks and receiving help from the NHS because of fear of being arrested. The current UK law makes it illegal to manage brothels so sex workers cannot work together safely so sex workers have to decide whether to stay safe or risk getting arrested.

Should brothels be legal? Because escorts in Belfast have to make the choice to decide whether they stay safe with other workers in a brothel (which are against the law to manage) or getting arrested, sex workers' health is at risk. No one should be in danger because of the law. Sex work is not regulated, which makes sex workers vulnerable because they are not getting the healthcare that they need. They should be having health check-ups, vaccinations and receiving the treatment they need. Having sex work decriminalised helps protect the workers from violence, gives them access to the healthcare that they are entitled to. It also protects workers from discrimination, along with providing safe working conditions and giving them access to benefits if needed. Whether you agree or disagree with sex work, it is still a job profession and no one should be in danger because of their job. Everyone has the right to working safely, having access to benefits and receiving the help they need.