Sex workers will be given entrepreneur permits.
PHILIPSBURG:--- Deputy Prime Minister Richard Gibson Sr. confirmed on Wednesday during the Council of Ministers press briefing that the Council of Ministers has not yet finalized the process on issuing permits to sex workers. Further to that the Deputy Prime Minister said that St. Maarten, namely the Minister of Justice still has to decide and inform the owners of the clubs which of them will be allowed to operate as brothels and which would be allowed to operate as entertainment clubs.
Gibson said the matter was discussed last Thursday in the Council of Ministers meeting but nothing has been finalized as yet. He said the Minister of Justice still has to bring his proposal to the Council of Ministers as well as the Minister of TEATT. Gibson said the Minister of TEATT informed the Council last week that she found a modus on which to issue the “entrepreneur permits to the sex workers who would then have to the freedom to live on their own, and to also negotiate and do business with the club of their choice that are permitted to operate as a brothel.
Minister Gibson made clear that the matter will be discussed again this Thursday in the Council of Ministers meeting but he cannot and will not guarantee that the matter will be finalized in that meeting and a decision would be taken then. He said after the Court decision that was rendered some months ago the Minister of Labor had stopped accepting requests from Club owners but the court ruled that the Minister cannot refuse to accept the requests, however, that does not mean the Minister of Labor will issue permits for sex workers. That he said will be handled by the Minister of TEATT and decision was taken by the Council of Ministers months ago to issue entrepreneurs permits to these individuals. Gibson said government will not deviate from the decision they took several months ago however, they are still working on it so that the sex workers could apply for their permits while the Minister of Justice has to identify which of the clubs on the island could operate as brothels.