"I think sex workers are getting a bit tired of waiting."
They are stalkers, searching for someone to target and their hunting grounds are convenience stores, in malls, parks and, in Jessica's case, our local recreation centres. We thought that type of crime happened in other countries, not Canada. We were wrong.
As the proliferation of online escort services -- gay and straight alike -- suggests, Americans engage in escort services in considerable numbers. Moralism aside, what's the actual harm? We reviewed the available scientific evidence on HIV, other health issues, violence and human rights among sex workers, including among male sex workers -- and gained invaluable insights into the power of decriminalization to reduce harm.
What's going on in Libya is not trafficking, but a large-scale effort to smuggle migrants into Europe by men who are often greedy and unscrupulous. In the vast majority of cases, they are smuggling these migrants at their own request. A similar confusion with nomenclature applies to the debate over sex trafficking. There's a problem with calling something by the wrong name.
The passage of the new prostitution law has sparked a host of reactions. Many news articles opposing the legislation have been published, and some sex workers say that criminalizing their clients makes their work unsafe. Purchasers of sex are silent on the matter, letting the industry do their bidding while hiding behind the veil of anonymity.
A recent article on Justin Trudeau highlighted the Liberal Leader's position on prostitution as favouring an 'evidence-based approach' that protects marginalized people from violence. He just won't tell you what that approach is. It's time for leaders, in all levels of government, to stop waxing eloquent about "evidence-based" approaches and finally take a stand that protects marginalized women and girls. They are not commodities to be bought and sold. Every vulnerable and marginalized person has value and dignity and Canadian leaders should seek to end their prostitution -- not support it.
MP Joy Smith's December 10 editorial declares it "appalling" that 25 members of Toronto City Council asked Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne to refer the Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act to the Ontario Court of Appeal. In imposing her preferred frame of "survivors of prostitution" versus "pimps and johns," she fails to address the crucial point of the councillors' letter.
Prostitution is not driven by poverty. Prostitution is driven by men who desire to purchase women and youth for sex. That is why, for the first time in Canadian history, our government has brought forward legislation that aggressively targets the pimps and johns who fuel the demand for this activity with tough penalties.