COVID-19

It’s no suprise to anyone that COVID-19 is having a huge impact on the sex worker community. Sex Worker Collective is making a dedicated section on the website to assist sex workers on a range of issues we may face while living through COVID. We will continue to add to this section of the website as we gather more information.

We aim to supply a directory of services that we hope will be useful to sex workers during the COVID-19 period. Please keep in mind many of the services listed are not peer based and we cannot vouch for how sex worker friendly they are. We welcome any feedback you’d like to provide on your experience in accessing any of the services. Please hit on the words in red to link you through to the service you’re interested in

Services

Health Direct Coronavirus (COVID-19) 
Website funded by Australian Government including information on: seeing a doctor and getting tested, symptoms and how the virus spreads, social distancing and avoiding infection, social gathering and business closures, about self-isolation, groups at higher risk, information for older Australians, information for carers, childcare and school exclusions, travel advice and restrictions, other questions, where can I get local information?  

 

Translated Resources – Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)  – Department of Health and Human Services
COVID-19 fact sheets available in 48 languages
Please see here: Migrant language COVID-19 fact sheets

 

 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources – Australian Government Department of Health
Department of Health’s resources on COVID-19.
Please see Department of Health COVID-19 Fact Sheets

 

Translated Coronavirus (COVID-19) ResourcesAustralian Government Department of Health
A list of resources about COVID-19 in other languages. The resources include fact sheets, guidelines and other publications. Fact sheets in Arabic, Vietnamese, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Farsi, Korean, Italian, Greek, Chin Hakka, Hazaragi and Kurdish.
Please see: Translated COVID-19 Resources

 

Help Your Neighbour – Migrant Workers Resource Centre
Resources to ask your neighbours who may not have English as a first language if they’re ok and if they need anything. 1 picture resource and 1 in multiple languages.

Justice Connect
Emergency powers and what the rules are in Victoria

Australian Government
Australian Government website regularly updated with the latest Coronavirus news, updates and advice from government agencies across Australia. Has links to “Coronavirus app” if you want to load it on your phone

Australian Government – The Treasury
Resource page listing all the stimulus packages available in Australia including fact sheets on JobKeeper and Support for Sole Traders

Department of Health and Human Services Victoria
COVID-19 daily updates including information about confirmed cases and public health response activities

 

MyGov
The place where all government services are located online including (but not limited too):

  • Centrelink – apply for JobSeeker, Youth Allowance JobSeeker, Parenting Payment, Farm Household Allowance, Special Benefit Recipient
  • Australian Taxation Office (ATO)
  • Medicare
  • Housing VIC online

If you want to apply for a JobSeeker Payment, you will need to get a CRN and linking code from Centrelink by calling 132 850 before you can apply for the payment on the MyGov website. A CRN is your Customer Reference Number and is the number that will identify you for life with Centrelink. If you’ve ever had a Centrelink payment you will already have a CRN even if it was 50 years ago. A linking code is a number generate by Centrelink that allows you to link your CRN to your online Centrelink page on the MyGov website. The linking code lasts 14 days and can only be used once, so if it expires you need to call them again for a new one.

 

Services Australia
Services Australia is Centrelink. This page will let you know about information and services if you’ve been effected by VOCID-19 including details of what payments you may be entitled too and how to apply.

 

Australian Taxation Office (ATO)
Register interest here if you want the JobKeeper Payment: ATO Register Now for JobKeeper Updates

Jobkeeper Payment is

  • for sex workers who have an ABN, declare income and pay tax as a sole trader. For more information on if you qualify for this payment please check here: Information for Sole Traders
  • for people who may also have a straight job and who’ve been in the job for 12 months (please check if you eligible for this payment based on your country of origin). For more information please check here: Fact Sheet for Employees

 

What Government payment are you able to get?
The following are fact sheets detailing different payments people may be entitled too.

 

Moneysmart
Moneysmart is an Australian Government-backed initiative led by ASIC to help people with their finances. COVID-19 content includes making financial decisions, what to do if you’re having problems paying your mortgage, problems paying your bills or fines, urgent help with money, managing on a low income and a search facility for you to find a financial counsellor. They are doing ongoing updates to their website as legislation changes with COVID-19.
Please see here for: COVID-19 making financial decisions

 

National Debt Helpline
A not-for-profit service that helps people in Australia tackle their debt problems. Offering a free confidential financial counselling service with professional financial counsellors.

 

 

Tenants Victoria
COVID-19 and the impacts on renters including latest updates and advise for renters. Detailed information on

 

Crisis and Emergency Housing in Victoria
Contact details for referral service if you are experiencing homelessness, need crisis or emergency housing. Includes contacts for statewide services, local services and Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre.
Please see: Housing VIC crisis and emergency accommodation

 

TeleHealth
Medicare is now allowing people to access health services from their home while everyone is undergoing self isolation or quarantine to reduce the risk of being exposed to COVID-19. What it means is you will now access your doctor, psychologist, social worker, specialist etc either using videoconferencing or on the phone with the government preferring videoconferencing so your mental health practitioner can see you while doing your consultation. Many psychologists and psychiatrists are now preferring to see their clients using telehealth so please call them to find out if they will see you in person or if you need to book a telehealth appointment. You need to have a Medicare card to access telehealth services and be on a Medicare Mental Health Plan or having your session bulk billed in some way to qualify for it.

For information please see

 

This Way Up
Provides online programs, education and research in anxiety, depressive disorders and physical health. Website has a test tool to let you check you stress, anxiety and stress which then suggests courses you can do with them. The courses are evidence based courses meaning they have been researched and found to have clinical benefits or in other words they are safe and work. Issues the courses address include anxiety, depression, PTSD, OCD, Mindfulness-Based CBT, Health Anxiety and others. On Monday 6th April they are launching a new website specifically tailored to COVID.

This way up is designed and managed by St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney and University of NSW. It usually costs money to do their courses, however while COVID is happening, they are providing free access to all courses.

 

Support Phone Lines
*Please note: all phone lines are overwhelmed at the moment and most of the services are asking people to be VERY patient o to contact them via their chatrooms or by sending them an email if they offer them as an option.

Suicide Line Victoria
Suicide Line Victoria provides support over the phone, online chat and video chat. They also have resources on their website for people who may be suicidal, are survivors or suicide, are friends and family of people at risk or for people who’ve lost someone to suicide.
There website is found here: Suicide Line Victoria

 

Lifeline
Lifeline provides 24 hour phone counselling, texting services, online chat service and online resources for a range of issues. The website has a range of self-help tool kits with information about issues such as mental illness depression suicide prevention and more.

  •  Lifeline website
  •  Phone number: 13 11 14 (24 hours, 7 days)
  • Lifeline Text (trial service): text 0477 13 11 14 (available 6.00pm – midnight (AEDT), 7 days a week)
  • A free interpreting service for people who do not speak English is available
    To access this service please:
    1) Call TIS on 131 450 and ask to talk to Lifeline on 13 11 14 in the language required.
    2) TIS will call 13 11 14 on behalf of the caller.
    A call to TIS is the cost of a local call from landlines (additional charges apply for mobiles).
    Find out more at: www.tisnational.gov.au
  • If you are deaf, or have a hearing impairment or speech impairment, contact us through the National Relay Service:
    TTY (teletypewriter) users phone 133 677 then ask for 13 11 14
    Speak and Listen users phone 1300 555 727 then ask for 13 11 14
    Internet relay users connect to the NRS then ask for 13 11 14

 

Men’s Line Australia
Telephone and online counselling service for men with emotional health and relationship concern providing free help, support and referrals.

Men’s Line has a resource on every issue men face from same sex attraction, domestic and family violence (DFV), anger management, being a dad, suicide, mental well-being for men, relationships, couples counselling, alcohol and other drug use (AOD).

Services include fact sheets, blog, news page, online chat counselling, video chat counselling using Skype, call back service, open line service where men are able to call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

 

 

 

 

Domestic Violence Victoria
This is the peak body for family violence services for women and children in Victoria so they don’t provide any direct services to people experiecing DFV. They do have 2 pages of good information on their website though:
COVID-19 and Family Violence: Information for Victim Survivors
COVID-19 and Family Violence: Information for Family and Friends

 

Tenants Victoria and DFV 
Provides a kit to help people in rental housing to know their rights, have a secure home and limit any financial loss if experiencing DFV.
For more information please see: Family Violence Protection Tenancy Kit: What you can do if you’re renting

 

Crisis and Emergency Housing in Victoria
Contact details for referral service if you are experiencing homelessness, need crisis or emergency housing. Includes contacts for statewide services, local services and Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre.
Please see: Housing VIC crisis and emergency accommodation

 

Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre
Victoria’s statewide first response service for women, young people and children experiencing family violence. Work through a respond-recover-prevent framework. Safe Steps provides information and support to people escaping DFV and people supporting them by providing a range of services including  phone, in person, case management and written resources in English and other languages.

Safe Steps states they value inclusivity, diversity and intersectionality and are committed to helping women and children, trans and gender diverse individuals of all ethnicities, races, sexual orientations, religions, ages and physical abilities

 

Djirra  – A place for Aboriginal and Torrres Strait Islander People’s
The following is taken directly from the Djirra website because we do not presume it is our place to speak for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People’s.

Djirra is a place where culture is shared and celebrated, and where practical support is available to all Aboriginal women and particularly to Aboriginal people who are currently experiencing family violence or have in the past.

As most of our contact is with women, the work we do is predominantly designed by and for Aboriginal women.

We are an Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisation governed by an Aboriginal Board of Directors who are elected by our members.

Djirra provides:

 

InTouch Multicultural Centre Against Family Violence
Most people working in the service are migrants or refugees with a first-hand understanding of the migration journey, and potential cultural impacts on women experiencing family violence. Aim to listen to your story, respect your culture and support your decisions in dealing with family violence, while helping you to build your understanding and navigate Australian systems, services and laws.

They work with you to develop a personalised plan, have case workers and lawyers to assist you with family violence issues.

 

Family Safety Pack – Department of Health and Human Services
Family Safety Pack for men and women coming to Australia. It includes information on Australia’s laws regarding domestic and family violence, sexual assault and forced marriage, and a woman’s right to be safe in 48 languages (also available in English).
Please see here for: Family Safety Pack

 

Futures Free From Violence – Drummond Street Services
Futures Free from Violence (FFFV) offers women, trans and gender diverse people who have used force and/or violence in family and intimate partner relationships the opportunity to work towards change in both a supported group and one-to-one therapeutic environment. Offering online and phone counselling throughout COVID-19.
For more information please see: Futures Free From Violence

 

Community Centre’s and Services

Drummond Street Services
Drummond Street provides services to individuals and families in the Queer and migrant communities. Programs include parenting support,  group therapy, individual therapy, fact sheets, youth services, Dad’s services, National Redress support services, Step Families Australia, DFV support group and counselling.

 

Domestic and Family Violence (DFV)

Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre
Victoria’s statewide first response service for women, young people and children experiencing family violence. Work through a respond-recover-prevent framework. Safe Steps provides information and support to people escaping DFV and people supporting them by providing a range of services including  phone, in person, case management and written resources in English and other languages.

Safe Steps states they value inclusivity, diversity and intersectionality and are committed to helping women and children, trans and gender diverse individuals of all ethnicities, races, sexual orientations, religions, ages and physical abilities

Domestic and Family Violence Services (DFV)

Djirra  – A place for Aboriginal and Torrres Strait Islander People’s
The following is taken directly from the Djirra website because it is not our place to speak for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People’s.

Djirra is a place where culture is shared and celebrated, and where practical support is available to all Aboriginal women and particularly to Aboriginal people who are currently experiencing family violence or have in the past.

As most of our contact is with women, the work we do is predominantly designed by and for Aboriginal women.

We are an Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisation governed by an Aboriginal Board of Directors who are elected by our members.

Djirra provides:

 

Legal Services

Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service

 

TeleHealth
Medicare is now allowing people to access health services from their home while everyone is undergoing self isolation or quarantine to reduce the risk of being exposed to COVID-19 while waiting in a doctors surgery. You need to have a Medicare card to access telehealth services. What it means is you will now access your doctor, psychologist, social worker, specialist etc either using videoconferencing or on the phone with the government preferring videoconferencing so your doctor can see you while doing your consultation. Many doctors are now preferring to see their patients using telehealth so please call your GP or check their websites to find out if they will see you in person or if you need to book a telehealth appointment.

For information please see

 

National Pharmacies
Some people are eligible to get their prescription medication home delivered. See the following pages for:

 

InstantScripts
Provides prescriptions after people have completed a short digital consultation. Once the online consultation is completed the answers are reviewed by their medical team and a prescription is emailed to the pharmacist within minutes. Their doctors follow up with an original script a few days later. Schedule 8 medications and codeine based medications are not available.

Telehealth service is also available through InstantScripts which is bulk billed if you have a Medicare card. Information for accessing the service can be found here: InstantScript Telehealth

 

1800 My Options
A women centred service, established to provide information and referral to meet individual sexual and reproductive health needs. Services includes information on contraption, abortion, other sexual and reproductive health.

 

 

 

Coronavirus Information in Your Language – SBS Language
Videos, fact sheets and news in 63 languages
Please see here for more information: Coronavirus in your language

 

Translated Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources – Australian Government Department of Health
A list of resources about COVID-19 in other languages. The resources include fact sheets, guidelines and other publications. Fact sheets in Arabic, Vietnamese, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Farsi, Korean, Italian, Greek, Chin Hakka, Hazaragi and Kurdish.
Please see: Translated COVID-19 Resources

 

Translated Resources – Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)  – Department of Health and Human Services
COVID-19 fact sheets available in 48 languages
Please see here: Migrant language COVID-19 fact sheets

 

Mental Health and Wellness

Lifeline
Lifeline provides 24 hour phone counselling, texting services, online chat service and online resources for a range of issues. The website has a range of self-help tool kits with information about issues such as mental illness depression suicide prevention and more. Lifeline uses

  •  Lifeline website
  •  Phone number: 13 11 14 (24 hours, 7 days)
  • Lifeline Text (trial service): text 0477 13 11 14 (available 6.00pm – midnight (AEDT), 7 days a week)
  • A free interpreting service for people who do not speak English is available
    To access this service please:
    1) Call TIS on 131 450 and ask to talk to Lifeline on 13 11 14 in the language required.
    2) TIS will call 13 11 14 on behalf of the caller.
    A call to TIS is the cost of a local call from landlines (additional charges apply for mobiles).
    Find out more at: www.tisnational.gov.au

 

Medical / Health

1800 My Options
A women centred service, established to provide information and referral to meet individual sexual and reproductive health needs. Services includes information on contraption, abortion, other sexual and reproductive health.

 

Domestic and Family Violence (DFV)

InTouch Multicultural Centre Against Family Violence
Most people working in the service are migrants or refugees with a first-hand understanding of the migration journey, and potential cultural impacts on women experiencing family violence. Aim to listen to your story, respect your culture and support your decisions in dealing with family violence, while helping you to build your understanding and navigate Australian systems, services and laws.

They work with you to develop a personalised plan, have case workers and lawyers to assist you with family violence issues.

 

Family Safety Pack – Department of Health and Human Services
Family Safety Pack for men and women coming to Australia. It includes information on Australia’s laws regarding domestic and family violence, sexual assault and forced marriage, and a woman’s right to be safe in 48 languages (also available in English).
Please see here for: Family Safety Pack

 

Community Migrant Women’s Services

Victorian Immigrant and Refugee Women’s Coalition
Migrant women’s service offering a range of services including Women’s Circles, Global Friendship Kitchen and Mother’s Playgroup, training and education programs.  The service aims at increasing migrant and refugee women’s social connections, capacity and social capital. One of the training and education programs they provide is the prevention of family violence that discusses the complexities of family violence including addressing the issues and barriers migrant women face when asking for help.

 

Men’s Line Australia
Telephone and online counselling service for men with emotional health and relationship concern providing free help, support and referrals.

Men’s Line has a resource on every issue men face from same sex attraction, domestic and family violence (DFV), anger management, being a dad, suicide, mental well-being for men, relationships, couples counselling, alcohol and other drug use (AOD).

Services include fact sheets, blog, news page, online chat counselling, video chat counselling using Skype, call back service, open line service where men are able to call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.