I feel I had no choice other than to expose what I deem to be exploitation of young women, in particular those who are unemployed seeking employment or those looking to change occupations due to financial circumstances or unfair working conditions.
I’m 18 years old and have been living in the Algarve since I was 10 after relocating from the UK. I have dual nationality as my father is Portuguese and I can speak Portuguese fluently.
Since my previous job came to an end in January I’ve been looking for a full-time job through the day and have uploaded my CV along with a profile I’ve created of myself on job websites such as: coisas.pt, olx.pt, net-empregos etc.
I was shocked to have received as many as six phone calls and e-mails from men looking to potentially employ me for a variety of jobs such as: secretary, villa cleaner and waitress, all conveniently within my transport range and hours I needed.
I was appalled and disappointed to find out that the average amount per month they were prepared to pay me was around €1,300 if I was willing to have sex with them a few times a month. Two of these employers mentioned to me that their previous employees were Brazilian and had recently relocated back to Brasil. They also made clear that without the sex, the job offer would no longer stand.
It’s deeply frustrating for me as I and many other women who are in need of work, especially those with families to support, are taunted with a very decent living wage in exchange for sex, so basically you can live comfortably through this credit crunch in Portugal as long as you’re either single, don’t mind cheating and are very open minded.
I feel very angry about this situation and wish there was more I could do to stop these men taking advantage of people.
Editor’s note: Dear Stephanie, thank you for your comments. I recommend you report these incidents to your local police.