Accessing Sex Worker Resources

Everyone has a right to sexual expression and that includes people with disability.

Touching Base Inc. is a small charitable organisation, based in Sydney, Australia. Active since October 2000, Touching Base emerged out of the need to assist people with disability and sex workers to connect with each other.

Is sex work legal?

Yes! In NSW, since 1978 it has been legal to be a sex worker. In 1995 the act of owning and operating a brothel were decriminalised. Touching Base works to educate the community, around the role of sex workers in ensuring people with disability have access to sex and intimacy.

What is skin hunger?

Simply a desire for physical contact with another person — and it’s a very human desire, beyond the physical care a person with disability receives.

Resources have been developed by the Touching Base Committee for clients with disability and their personal carers. These materials are also recommended reading for sex workers, service provider staff and adult family members.

The website is built around information on everything you wanted to know about the sex industry but were too scared to ask. Easy guides include

  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • 10 Tips for Clients
  • general enquiries phone line for any other questions.

Touching Base also offers training for sex workers, and workshops for disability service providers. The Touching Base Referral List of disability-friendly sex service providers has information provided by independent sex workers, and commercial sex services premises such as brothels & massage parlours. Although Touching Base is based in NSW, the Referral List includes sex workers and premises in other states and territories within Australia.

How the Touching Base Referral List works – When someone with a disability (or their carer, family or friend) wants to be referred to a sex worker or brothel they use a form on the Touching Base website. If they have listings in the requested area, one of the Touching Base Referral List volunteer operators provides the contact details of sex workers, or the commercial premises, that appear most likely to match what the client needs. The person with disability (or carer, family member or friend) then makes direct contact with the sex workers to discuss price and other details, and then if possible and suitable, they make a booking.


0424 591 409

Content contributed by Touching Base.

Source: IDEAS July – August 2019 Newsletter  

IDEAS website: