PEOPLE’S PARLIAMENT MEETING, HOUSE OF COMMONS.
Stop the criminalisation of sex work – safety first!
26 March 2014, 6.30-8.30pm
Committee Room 12
Host: John McDonnell MP
Chair: English Collective of Prostitutes
Carina Edlund, Rose Alliance, Sweden
Boglárka Fedorkó, SZEXE, Hungary – tbc
Ariane G, sex worker, Germany
Jenny O, Sex Workers Alliance of 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
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.
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.