In 1975, as many as 100 sex workers in France gathered at Lyon’s Saint-Nizier Church and protested against the criminalisation of their work and exploitative living conditions The occupation of Saint - Nizier church by Lyon prostitutes refers to the ten-day occupation of the Saint-Nizier Church in Lyon by more than a hundred prostitutes on 2 June 1975 to draw attention to their inhumane working conditions. The occupation lasted eight days until the women were removed by the police on 10 June. Sympathetic occupations of churches by prostitutes have been followed in Paris, Marseille, Grenoble, Saint-Étienne and Montpellier. This day is celebrated in order to amplify the voices of those involved in sex work. The living conditions of sex workers are often exploitative. It is because of the reason that sex work is criminalised in several countries and therefore, its workers are not treated like those working in other professions. The protest happened each 2 June and this is why it is today marked as International Sex Workers' Day. It is significant as even today, sex workers around the world are struggling to get basic rights. The day acts as a platform to demand equal rights. It also celebrates the impact of the first protest and how when together, the community of sex workers is stronger.
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