'Money, not traffickers,' lures migrant sex staff
By Lincoln Tan
5:30 AM Friday Apr 12, 2013
Migrant prostitutes here are not victims of people trafficking and many are in the sex trade for the money, research on migrant sex workers in New Zealand has found.
However, one in six are breaking immigration law by working in the sex industry and 5 per cent cannot refuse clients and do not have easy access to their passports.
The findings by researchers Kaitiaki Research and Evaluation will be released by the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective this morning at the "Prevent People Trafficking" conference.
The study found 86 per cent of migrant sex workers in New Zealand came from Asia, and more than a third travelled here because they knew someone who lived here.
More than 60 per cent travelled here alone, 44 per cent came as tourists and more than a quarter hold the student visa.
A total of 124 migrant sex workers were interviewed for the study, which was conducted predominantly in Auckland.
57%: On student, work or visitor visa
86%: From Asia
26%: Came to New Zealand "to study"
35%: Knew someone living here
76%: Did sex work to pay household bills
5%: Could not refuse clients and did not have access to their passports
Source: Research on migrant sex workers in New Zealand