Ballina brothel lifting a social taboo
RECEIVING a phone call from a parent or guardian on behalf of a potential client is not unusual at the Ballina Exclusive Company brothel.
Brothel owner 'Suzie' says the purpose-built seven-room premises on Piper Dr, established on the Northern Rivers for almost twenty years, is catering to disabled clients.
Wheelchair accessibility is provided in one of the themed room, in addition to a VIP pole dance room, spa room and 50 shades of Grey dungeon; while some sex workers are qualified in disability services.
Bookings will often come from parents or the carers of intellectually or physically disabled clientele.
"We have about half a dozen guys that come in regularly," Suzie said.
"Some mothers and fathers actually phone to book the appointment and they bring their son in and sit in the waiting room and say 'don't be nervous mate, choose who you're most comfortable with'.
"It's very lovely, and it's often the fathers who will ring back and say 'you've really changed his life. Thank-you.'"
Before becoming a top Sydney escort and Australian Penthouse Magazine 'pet' - gracing covers in 1983 and 1987 - Suzie was qualified as a registered psychiatric nurse.
She and other advocacy groups such as Touching Base tout sex work for the disabled and diverse clientele, because of its physical and mental health benefits.
Touching Base, whose patrons included former high court judge Justice Kirby, states on its website that "denying sexual expression to human beings, cuts them off from that aspect of their personalities and of their happiness."
"Touch is a huge thing, without out touch there's a certain amount of tension that builds up if you're not releasing it over a period of time and causes enormous stress," she said.
"The client who comes here in the wheelchair once per month, if they don't bring him in he, can start to get a little bit aggressive towards his carers.
"He leaves here with the biggest smile on his face and always giving me the thumbs up."
Suzie says the stigma surrounding the sex lives of people with disabilities is disheartening, especially given one out of five Australians have a disability.
"I think it's good for working girls because there's certain ladies that are born to be sexy, born to be sexual, and also very empathetic people, so it's almost like a nursing or caring job, expect there's a bit more glamour.
"Some of our girls do hold qualifications in disability work, so they do have standing in that regards.
"It would help if the taboo was lifted because we have a lot of parents who like the idea of it but are too worried.
"I think in society because of the job we should be held to a little bit more on higher regard."
When a carer or parent contacts a sex worker or sex work organisation, they must provide the worker with complete consent from the client before the appointment can be scheduled.
INFO: Ballina Exclusive Company is located on 34 Piper Drive, Ballina, and can be contacted on (02) 6681 6038. The brothel is one of a four licenced brothel on the Northern Rivers, with other brothels also offering disability access.