Meeting in Parliament, Stop the criminalisation of sex work

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Date(s) - 26/03/2014
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Houses of Parliament


Meeting in Parliament, Stop the criminalisation of sex work



Committee Room 12
Host: John McDonnell MP
Chair: English Collective of Prostitutes

International speakers:

Carina Edlund, Rose Alliance, Sweden
Boglárka Fedorkó, SZEXE, Hungary
Ariane G, sex worker, Germany
Mary L, sex worker, Ireland
Morgane Merteuil, STRASS, France
Molly Smith, Scotpep, Scotland
Luca Stevenson, International Committee on
the Rights of Sex Workers in Europe


Lori Bora, Soho Working Girls
Candy Hutton, won court case against breach of ASBO
Jean Johnson, Hampshire Women’s Institute
Clayton Littlewood, author
Lisa Longstaff, Women Against Rape
Toni Mac, Sex Worker Open University
Nigel Richardson, Hodge, Jones and Allen
Vera Rodriguez, dancer, x:talk
Didi Rossi, Queer Strike
Robert Jappie, Release
Paula Yanev, English Collective of Prostitutes

REPORTS FROM: New Zealand which decriminalised sex work 11 years ago. Canada’s Supreme Court which ruled that criminalisation is in breach of sex workers’ human rights.

An All-Party Parliamentary Group has just recommended changing the prostitution laws to criminalise clients.

Criminalising clients will not stop prostitution, nor will it stop the criminalisation of women. But it will make it more dangerous and stigmatising for sex workers.
Sex workers from Sweden – who know first-hand the disastrous impact of such a law – and from a number of other European countries, including the UK, will be speaking against this proposal.

There is widespread anger that MPs are promoting increased criminalisation when unemployment, benefit cuts & sanctions, lowering wages, and homelessness are driving more women, particularly mothers, into prostitution. These proposals will further divert police time and resources from investigating rape, trafficking and other violent crimes, to policing consenting sex.

The existing prostitution laws force sex workers to work in isolation and danger. Of the two women murdered in London in the last few months, one was working on the street and one was working indoors alone. Senior police officers recently acknowledged that “operations to tackle the trade are ‘counterproductive’ and likely to put the lives of women at risk”. Despite this mass raids against sex workers in Soho, London, have thrown scores of women out of the relative safety of their flats. Arrests continue against sex workers on the street.
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Organised by: English Collective of Prostitutes 020 7482 2496

Event supported by: Legal Action for Women, Women Against Rape


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