WISH is exceptionally proud and excited to have opened the doors to Canada’s first-ever 24/7 temporary emergency shelter for street-based sex workers.
Precariously housed and unhoused women in the sex trade will now have a place to temporarily call home while continuing to access all the programs, services, and wraparound supports that WISH has to offer.
“I’m not in a place of desperation anymore and can up my prices. I don’t have to exchange low-cost sex work for a place to stay.”
The shelter opened its doors for the first time on October 26th, 2020 thanks to critical support from BC Housing and the City of Vancouver. The shelter provides beds for 23 sex working women (cis and trans) and two-spirit folks along with hot showers, laundry and meals. Some of the beds will be allocated to sex workers seeking short-term respite spaces, while the rest will have a longer-term focus, while more permanent housing solutions are found.
Street-based sex workers now have a place to sleep solidly, uninterrupted, and wake up calmly and slowly. They can enjoy a meal and relax in peace without worrying about their belongings, or where they’re going to sleep or eat next.
The opening of the shelter is a major milestone for sex workers who access WISH. This milestone was possible thanks to your continued support, as well as years of advocacy and allyship from neighbouring organizations and community allies— including the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre and Atira Women’s Resource Society.
Bed referrals: 604-558-4031
Other inquiries: 604-669-9474
- BC Housing
- City of Vancouver