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  • Ashleigh Putt-Fallows

Abrupt Closure of Award Winning Wellington Brothel

Words by Ashleigh Putt-Fallows (she/her)

Ngāti Whātua, Ngāpuhi, Tūhoe

A central, appointment based brothel that has been open since 2006 has announced that they will be closing their doors on the 29th February 2024. 

A statement made by the owner (who is a sex worker), announced the closure to clients with mixed emotions, stating “Although this decision is not made lightly, I believe it is the best way forward for both myself and the business”. There was no reason provided in the initial statement as to why the decision was made - at least not to clients. 

The owner stated they were “committed to ensuring a smooth transition for our clients and our babes” but the sex workers who work there were, reportedly, only given two weeks notice, and the opportunity to work on premises as independent workers until the 24th of March. 

When contacted for comment, the club said that the reported short notice was not accurate. They also mentioned they had asked their works not to share any information that wasn’t already public externally. 

Sex workers who work for agencies, for the most part, are contractors and that means they can be stopped from working at short notice. Giving two weeks can put girls in a tough position, risking their income and livelihood. While the clubs reported commitment to a smooth transition is nice, the owner putting a strong emphasis on independent work can create uncertainty for workers who are used to agencies with protections in place. Such as security guards or having multiple operations from the same venue. Finding a new agency can be hard when some contracts around Wellington include clauses preventing girls from working with ‘competitors’.

This has been a longtime issue in the Sex Work industry as the Fired Up Stilettos advocated for better contractor rights last year and the Green Party has committed to putting forward a members bill regarding these issues. With all being said, I would encourage those who have or are planning to engage with sex work to support the workers as much as possible. Continue to visit them, tip them and treat them with the respect you would any other worker.


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