Is the Government Ready to Legalize Prostitution for the Safety of the Sex Workers?

by julia.vincent-richard on February 7, 2014 - 5:50pm

 In this article, written by Denyse Coles, the idea that prostitution should be decriminalized is stressed.  The author puts emphasis on the three key factors that would be better for everyone.  These factors are dignity, safety and health.  She discusses about the fact that prostitution as we know it now is very dangerous and counterproductive.  According to Coles, when we think about the causes and consequences of prostitution such as drug addiction, sexual transmitted diseases and juvenile prostitution, we can understand that legalization of prostitution is important.  Denyse Coles tells the reader that it not the government’s business to interfere in sexual affairs of two consenting adults.

            In Canada, the practice itself is legal, but solicitation or getting paid for it is not.  According to her, these laws are not eliminating prostitution but they only make this practice very dangerous.  It is said that since Bill C-49 has passed, more than six hundred prostitutes have been murdered or missing.  Many of the women and men who are prostitutes are drug addicts and were victims of childhood sexual abuse.  It is pointed out that in any working area, there are laws to protect workers from sexual abuse and rape.  According to the author, since it is the law in any other kind of job, it should also be the case for sex workers.  Since in Canada prostitution is not legalized, prostitutes cannot denunciate a rape or sexual abuse.  Therefore, it is more dangerous for them and they are at high risk of murder and death. 

           According to me, this issue in our society debates the values of security versus order.  In the prostitute’s point of view, it is very unsecure to practice this work.  As the author of the text said, they could be murdered, raped or sexually abused.  The moral claim of that point of view would be that everyone is equal and would need as much security as needed.  In the government’s point of view, it is a question of order in the society.  If the government would accept and legalize this practice they might feel as losing power and authority.  Also, they would need to be responsible for all sex workers.  It is a big responsibility for the government and they might not know how to face it.  The moral claim of this point of view would be that it is illegal to exchange money if it is for a sexual relation.

           Finally, I would say my own opinion on the issue is that prostitution should be legalized.  I would like the government to put in place some security limits for sex workers.  Prostitution does happen every day.  Even if the government close their eyes to this social issue, it will always happen.  I do propose and wish that the government protects the sex workers in order to diminish the risk of rape, harassment, murder, sexual transmitted diseases and juvenile prostitution.  I believe that if the government would get involved in this issue, it would become far less dangerous for our society. As a citizen of Canada, do you feel legalization of prostitution should happen?

 

Coles, Denyse. "Point: Prostitution Should Be Decriminalized." Canadian Points Of View: Prostitution (2014): 2.Canadian Points of View Reference Centre. Web. 31 Jan. 2014.

 

Comments

this subject is important to me because it influences society every day and if we find a solution to this problem we can help many lives. It is proven that prostitution is a very dangerous job. Drug addiction, sexually transmitted disease and murder are all in the risks of this profession. Most of the time these people do not choose to be prostitutes, they are forced into it. Legalizing Prostitution will be giving these people support to do what they have to do, to get by safely. Prostitution is taking place if we like it or not, why shouldn't we legalize it to put some structure and control in place?

well this topic as a very interesting one but is also a complicated one. The reason being is that the act of prostitution is not illegal but the person that is asking for the prostitution is doing an illegal act. If the government was to legalize prostitution they could tax it and they could make it safer for the women. If the government takes place there would also be the reduction of crime and drugs thus reducing a lot of crime related problems. I completely agree with your opinion and that is exactly how i see the situation as well. should the government legalize prostitution?

This topic is interesting because, as the post mentioned, the problem debates the value of security and order. First, I do not agree with the act of prostitution but in my opinion, I think we should legalize it because it would be safer for these women. The value of security is much more important than order in that case. Every day, sex workers are abused verbally, physically and even sexually. They are not treated equally as other women. The structure of the legalization would protect them more than if it is not. There will always be sex workers whether it is legalized or not. So, why don't we legalize it in order to protect them?

Hi, I decided to comment on your post, because the legalization of prostitution is a topic that has good pros and cons. On my opinion, I am not for the legalization of prostitution, because if the Government do legalize prostitution they will see an increase in the drug use. Also, if let say the government do legalise the prostitution, There will be some requirements needed to be able to practice this ``job`` and for those who are not eligible they will practice it anyway illegally and it still will be dangerous for them. Should we really legalise prostitution?

I do strongly believe that prostitution should be legalized, except I do not believe we should legalize it right away. Although as you pointed out in your response that prostitution has many benefits to a population, as well as increasing the safety of the women and men working, Canada would not be able to support it. At least not yet, I think that the Canadian population would receive too much of a shock if prostitution was legalized, it goes against what our society has stood for. Especially in Quebec where the foundations go back to very strong Catholic roots and the rest of Canada being mostly protestant. Perhaps over time, the public will be able to accept an eventual legalization of prostitution as the media informs them of the benefits, but as of right now I do not think it would fit into the society we have in present day Canada.

Yes! I think that the legalization of prostitution is an option that we should definitely try out. We have the responsibility to protect and help the individuals who do wish to make it their career.

Sex workers should be treated with respect, and have the right to work in clean and safe conditions. I have written an article, "Dont' Follow the Leaders: The Criminalization of Prostitution Is Not the Way to Go" (http://newsactivist.com/en/articles/champlain-college-2016-newsactivist-...), which shows how what you mention would actually be the best solution.

And let me take a second, however, to react to some comments. Sex work is work. You do not have to sandwich the word job between quotation marks. Actually, you should not. Would you write: “That doctor must like his “job”?”

No.

Well then… I think that you have got your answer.

Decriminalization of prostitution in Canada is much desired because the current legal control of prostitution has been proven to be a failure as it forces sex workers to experience higher rate of victimization. For example, the new provision of the Criminal Code prohibiting the purchase of sex allows the police to target the clients of sex workers aggressively, and such practice has been proven to increase the risk of violence experienced by sex workers in Sweden and Canada, where prostitution is controlled legally through the Nordic model. This is because since the clients of sex workers fear the risk of arrest for communicating the intent to purchase sexual service, sex workers are compelled to work in secluded industrial areas where purchasers are less likely to be detected by the police. Such practice inevitably increases the risk of violence experienced by sex workers because they are compelled to negotiate terms and screen their clients quickly without carefully assessing them for safety red flags. In addition, because the intent to purchase sex is criminalized, the number of available clients is reduced which means greater competition among sex workers would forces them to reduce their service prices, exposing them to the risk of poverty. In fact, sex workers in five cities across Canada expressed their concerns during interviews with the National Post stating that the new regulations pushed some clients away and made business harder for them in other ways. Therefore, prostitution should be decriminalized in Canada.