As some may be aware Amnesty are drafting a policy that recommends sex work should be decriminalised. And some may be aware that there are a number of Hollywood stars who have signed a letter stating sex work should not be decriminalised.
What people need to understand is this simple point – Sex Work is Work. Sex trafficking and sex work are NOT the same thing. One is legitimate and consensual between adults and the other is illegal and non consensual.
I have previously blogged about decriminalisation and why it needs to happen. But to go over it again, There are many reasons that decriminalisation is important.
1. By decriminalising sex work, sex workers have access to health resources, have the ability to report violence to police with out fear of being arrested, have better access to be able to report possible sex trafficking,
2. They have increased safe work places which will then decrease the level of violence towards sex workers and give them the ability to get assistance from law enforcement if required.
3. Helps to decrease stigma which can have long term harmful effects on mental health and relationships.
4. It means sex workers have the same rights as all other workers and access to the same resources
And lastly in terms of sex trafficking it means that it is easier to report incidents of trafficking and also it means that law enforcement can work together with those who chose to be in the industry to fight and end sex trafficking.
So to those Hollywood stars and those who believe Amnesty shouldn’t support decriminalisation, why not take some time to listen to those of us who are actually in the industry, listen to what we have to say. Listen to how we feel about being criminalised or our clients being criminalised. Listen to the fact that criminalising this industry pushed many underground further, and then makes it harder to access law enforcement if we experience violence, makes it harder to access health resources that we need, puts us at more risk of sexual health issues and violence.
By not supporting decriminalisation you are saying that our right to choose what we do for work or how we need to work to be safe is taken away. We are all someones child, someones parent, someones friend or loved one, don’t we deserve the same human rights as everyone else, the same right to work in our chosen career?
You don’t have to like sex work in order to support decriminalisation. But all we ask is that you realise is that we deserve to have the same rights to choose our job as everyone else. Not everyone likes Police Officers, Not everyone likes politicians, Not everyone likes the Dentist, & the list goes on, but we don’t take away their rights to choose their career so why cant it be the same for sex workers?
PETITION – We call on the Amnesty International Council to stand firm and support decriminalisation of sex work and protect the human rights of sex workers – Click Here to sign
#FacesofProstitution going viral – Consider this – Blog Post by Krissy Smith – Sex work & Trafficking
Sex workers tell Lena Dunham, other celebs to STFU about shit they don’t understand – DeathandTaxes – Written by Jamie Peck
Recent Discussions about Sex Workers both online and offline – Blog Post By Krissy Smith
Sex Workers From Around the World Tell Hollywood to Mind Its Own Business – Hit & Run Blog – Elizabeth Nolan Brown – July 31st 2015
Hollywood v. Amnesty International: The big battle over sex work – The Telegraph – Radhika Sanghani – (29/07/2015)
Have your say – Amnesty’s sex work policy – Amnesty Website – (02/04/2015)
‘Fame-seeking’ celebrities at war with Amnesty over legalizing prostitution – RT Question More – (29/07/2015)
8 Things to Know About Amnesty’s Draft Proposal on Sex Work – Huffington Post – Katherine Koster – (30/07/2015)
Lena Dunham doubles down on her dangerous opinions about sex work undefined – Death & Taxes – Jamie Peck – August 7th 2015
Consultation on draft sex work policy – Amnesty International
Here’s what Amnesty International’s Sex Work Proposal really means – The Huffington Post – Hilary Hanson – (08/04/2015)
Amnesty International to determine a policy position on decriminalisation sex work – Lindy Kerin – June 28 2014 – ABC News