The counters are covered in dust. “For Sale” signs hang outside nearly every closed bar on Soi 6. Pattaya’s infamous street for “short time” fun will be closed for a long time.
Jariya, 29, was a hostess in one of the infamous street’s many brothels. But she’s been out of work since April.
In an Aug. 9 interview, she lamented how nightlife businesses and workers were blamed for the third coronavirus wave – it began in a pair of high-end gentlemen’s clubs in Bangkok’s ritzy Thonglor neighborhood – yet nightlife workers have suffered economically just as much as those in other sectors.
Unlike those businesses, however, sex workers and those in the entertainment sector have received no relief or handout from the government, as they are not covered by Social Security, she said.
Jariya said she would like to get a regular job, as she can’t bear the uncertainty over income and the risk of coronavirus infection. But no one in Pattaya is hiring.
She said the only income she has is from a British sponsor who sends her a bit of cash every month.
Instead of doing what many of her colleagues did – go home to the countryside – she is thinking of going to work overseas. But to do that, she needs to get vaccinated against Covid-19 – and find a country with open borders. Neither task is easy.