Saturday, April 08, 2006

Retraining Prostitutes for New Employment

The March 25th issue of the journal BMJ includes a news piece entitled, "Project retrains prostitutes as care workers for elderly people" [2006; 332:685, extract]. The story explains that the state of North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany is working on a project to retrain sex workers to take care of patients in nursing homes. A representative of the nation's Federal Labour Agency indicated that the nursing home industry has ~6400 home vacancies, despite high levels of unemployment. A representative of a Protestant nursing home called it "an obvious move," and stated that former prostitutes make excellent caregivers because they have "good people skills, aren't easily disgusted, and have zero fear of physical contact." Regarding one former prostitute now helping to coordinate the program, "...she found that looking after women was just as natural. 'Prostitution taught me to listen and to convey a feeling of safety,' she said. 'Isn't that exactly what's missing so much in care for elderly people?'"

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MeSH Tags: Nursing Homes/manpower; Prostitution

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