Prostitution Laws – Public Awareness and Education

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Prostitution Laws
Prostitution is the abuse of women plain and simple, said Natasha Falle, founder of Sex Trade 101


Canada’s Anti-Prostitution Laws
Natasha Falle, Sex Trade Advocate, on Canada’s anti-prostitution laws.
Watch Video: [Click Here]

Ron Marzel, a criminal lawyer, and Natasha Falle, a former sex trade worker, in Canada AM studios, Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2010.
Watch Video: CTV News Video (Click Here)

Indoors isn’t safer: Former prostitutes
By Kevin Connor, Toronto Sun

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Ex-hooker wants sex workers protected
By Sam Pazzano, Courts Bureau/Toronto Sun

Natasha Falle is a former prostitute with a different agenda than those wanting to abolish the current laws. Falle wants prostitutes to be protected from violent, parasitic pimps, so she�s backing the federal and Ontario Crown attorneys in their effort to maintain the status quo.

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Debating the merits of decriminalization
By Katherine Fernadez- Blance, The Journal – Queens Law School

With an estimated 200 prostitutes in Kingston,” Falle said she stands behind the decision to decriminalize prostitutes. Nonetheless, she said she wants the stakeholders in the industry to remain criminalized by the law.

“These women are there because they�re victims of the industry. Prostitution is a business exchange based on lies and threats of violence,� Falle said. After the ruling was made in September, the case moved on to the Court of Appeal.

Regardless of the outcome, Falle said the court case has helped remove the taboos associated with talking about the sex industry.

�Ten years ago, nobody was talking about this. We were all whores and sexual deviants. [The court decision] has given a lot of people in the business a voice, whether they are for or against the ruling,� Falle said.

Livia Jozsa, JD �12, was the principle organizer of the panel, entitled �Should Prostitution be legalized.� She said prostitution was illegal before the Sept. 28 ruling due to three provisions.

�The Bedford v. Canada case was an attempt to strike down three laws that made prostitution illegal,� Jozsa said. The laws included owning a bawdy house, living on the avails of prostitution and communicating for the purposes for the prostitution, she said.

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Can Prostitution be a Safe, Legal Career Option?
By Julia Beazley, Activate CFPL

A few days ago on facebook, my friend Natasha Falle, a former sex trade worker, a much sought after speaker and teacher on the subject, and a strong advocate for and resource to women in the sex trade (especially those seeking a way out) said this in her status update:

�Pro-prostitution groups don�t represent all people involved in the sex trade. They claim indoor prostitution would be safe if it weren�t for laws, and only street prostitutes are at risk of violence, drug addiction and pimp abuse. This is a lie, and it is a betrayal to street peers. My experience has taught me that there is violence wherever there are closed doors. Whether this happens behind home doors, hotel doors or car doors; there’s violence. �

Read more: [Click Here]

Tory MP sees ‘the nation as the pimp’ if prostitution ruling stands
By Jane Taber, Globe and Mail


It�s caucus day on Parliament Hill and behind the closed doors of the Conservative meeting you can bet that when the Ontario court ruling decriminalizing prostitution is discussed, Joy Smith will speak up.

The Conservative MP from Winnipeg calls Tuesday�s ruling by a Superior Court justice �astounding and alarming.� And she wants it appealed, fearful other provinces will follow suit, leading to the federal government to become Canada�s �pimp.�

Video: Prostitution law struck down

�My goodness we would have the nation as the pimp and that�s wrong and we can�t afford that,� she said in an interview Wednesday morning before going into caucus. Ms. Smith is a bit of an expert on these issues. Just before the Senate rose for the summer, it passed her private member�s bill calling for a five-year minimum sentence for traffickers of minors.

Sex trafficking and prostitution are linked, she argues, noting studies she says show that where prostitution is legalized there is a significant increase in the expansion of human trafficking and sexual exploitation. For example in Amsterdam, Ms. Smith says there is an influx of human trafficking victims and some brothels have had to be closed down as a result. Other countries where prostitution is legal have also experienced human trafficking problems.

�So why in the world would Ontario � I am speaking not for my government but for myself based on what I have done over the years � why in the world would this be happening? It�s astounding is what it is.�

Justice Minister Rob Nicholson has said that the government is �very concerned� about the ruling. He is seriously considering an appeal. �I am not the Justice Minister,� Ms. Smith said. �But I would strongly support that. There are so many women and children at risk. And I am astounded at this kind of thing would come forward in Ontario.

�We have to protect our women and children. We can�t afford [to decriminalize prostitution].�

Indeed, Natasha Falle, the head of Sex Trade 101, an organization based in Toronto that represents victims and survivors of the sex trade, refers to Ms. Smith as an �angel.� Ms. Falle knows of what she speaks, having worked as a prostitute for 12 years, beginning at age 14 and then being �trafficked across the country� by her pimp, who she married at 17.

�We are so happy to have her voice,� Ms. Falle told CTV of the Conservative MP. �It�s only been in the last few years since all those missing and murdered aboriginal women turned up dead did anybody care about us. So to have her speak out the way she is against this � what this means is so empowering.�

Ms. Falle wants the ruling appealed, too. She says it does nothing to protect sex trade workers. Calling the ruling �misguided,� she said, for example, the issue of where a sex-trade worker conducts her business � behind closed doors or in �outdoor locations� � makes no real difference.

�I�ve worked at both indoor and outdoor locations and they are equally dangerous,� she said. �In fact, working behind closed doors put me at a greater risk than working on a street corner because at least on a street corner I was visible to the public.�

Ms. Smith, meanwhile, is continuing to support the victims of human and sex trafficking. Recently, she put together a national strategy that she has given to Prime Minister Stephen Harper and other cabinet ministers. It calls for counseling for victimized women, educational opportunities and support for them after they are rescued from trafficking ring

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Liberalized laws make prostitution more dangerous
By Licia Corbella, Calgary Herald

“The example that is often pointed to is, of course, Amsterdam. And in Holland, there have been attempts for decades now to try to make this profitable for the workers and to make it safer -from panic buttons to the kind of level of detail of regulation that you wouldn’t want to print,” Perrin said.

But what the Netherlands has found is the more liberalized their prostitution laws get, the more crime and violence that liberalization begets.

“In Amsterdam, in recent years, they had to shut down almost half of the red-light district because of the infiltration of organized crime and violent pimps who profit from the trade in women,” he said.

When authorities studied who was being sold, it wasn’t Dutch women, “who were choosing prostitution over medicine or law as a career choice.” “Three-quarters of the women were impoverished women and girls from North Africa and Eastern Europe.

Most of them were controlled through violence and this was in a place that had the most stringent forms of regulation that was supposed to prevent this kind of thing from happening,” added Perrin.

In the state of Victoria in Australia, where prostitution is legal, Perrin said the hypocrisy of the law is breathtaking. It’s an offence for the woman prostitute to be in a brothel with a sexually transmitted disease, but no such restriction applies to the john.

“So, the john is promised a disease-free woman to purchase and do with as they choose, but that woman, who these regulations are supposedly made for her safety, she’s not given the same privilege to know that the person who is buying her is not infected with a life-threatening disease,” explained Perrin.

Natasha Falle, 37, founder of Sextrade 101 -a public awareness organization -and a professor of police foundations at Humber College in Toronto, turned her first trick at the age of 14 in Calgary’s Chinatown.

The former prostitute says the worst beating she ever got was in a common bawdy house she shared with four other teens, so the idea that there’s safety in numbers is a myth.

“It’s not Canada’s laws that make prostitution unsafe, it’s the johns who are raping and abusing the women and their pimps,” she said Wednesday.

Falle added that the reason prostitutes don’t call the police to report a violent date, isn’t because they fear the police, it’s because they don’t want to be labelled a snitch with their escort agency. That apparently does not change in jurisdictions where prostitution is completely legal.

“The Internet has driven prostitution indoors,” said Falle, “and the girls aren’t any safer.”

Here’s hoping Ontario’s Court of Appeal can see behind those walls.
Read More: Calgary Herald (Click Here)

Christine is pictured here confronting Terri-Jean Bedford, a Toronto dominatrix after Bedford won her case before the Appeal Court.

Do brothels make prostitution safer? Christine Barkhouse burst into tears when she heard that the Ontario Court of Appeal had ruled brothels were legal.
She started in the sex trade in Toronto at age 11. Today, at age 25, she works for Sex Trade 101, a group that describes itself as Toronto’s only “exit organization”.
CBC Ontario Today, [Click Here]

Landmark Prostitution Ruling:
Ontario’s Court of Appeal has ruled that some of Canada’s prostitution laws are unconstitutional
CBC News The National, Watch Video: [Click Here]

34 Trafficking/Prostitution Survivors Vote to Stand with Our Canadian Sisters Against The Prostitution Decision
Survivors Connect, the international online leaderless network of trafficking/prostitution survivors, has voted to stand with our Canadian sisters; the Aboriginal Women�s Action Network, SexTrade101, and Concertation des Luttes Contre L�Exploitation Sexuelle (CLES) AGAINST the Bedford prostitution decision. These amazing women have selflessly and tirelessly been educating the public about how the Bedford decision harms women in prostitution.
Survivors Connect Network: [Click Here]

Prostitution Problem Unfixed
“Prostitution is a real problem,” says guest Angel Wolfe.
She and Bridget Perrier say Ontario’s court ruling was the wrong move.
Sun News Network, Watch Video: [Click Here]

Canada’s Prostitution Laws
This report examines the recent ruling by Ontario Super Court Justice, Susan Himel and the implications of her decision to strike down three key provisions in Canada’s prostitution laws. FEATURED IN REPORT: Natasha Falle (Founder & Director, Sex Trade 101), Kat Macleod (Community Advocacy Worker, Sex Trade 101), Ruth Ross (Executive Director & General Legal Counsel, Christian Legal Fellowship), Chief Armand La Barge (Chief of Police, York Regional Police)
100 Huntley Street Show, Watch Video: [Click Here]

Mallick: Why are we talking ourselves into brothel city?
“All women should be shown a viable way out of the sex trade,” said Angel Wolfe, whose mother Brenda was killed by Robert Pickton Toronto Star
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MP Joy Smith Alarmed by Ontario Court of Appeal Ruling on Prostitution
�Legalizing brothels and the move towards the outright legalization of prostitution in Canada will inevitably lead to increased sex trafficking and child exploitation. The UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children [signed and ratified by 117 countries] explicitly recognizes that the majority of victims of trafficking, women and children, are trafficked for the purpose of prostitution. Legal brothels will provide organized crime, pimps, and human traffickers with the legal means to exploit women and youth.�
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A harm-reduction model that claims to help prostituted women by moving them indoors to legal brothels, not only would not reduce the harm to them, but would disguise the real issues. There is no evidence that indoor prostitution is safer for the women involved. Rather, it is just as violent and traumatic. Prostitution is inherently violent, merely an extension of the violence that most prostituted women experience as children. We should aim not merely to reduce this harm, as if it is a necessary evil and/or inescapable, but strive to eliminate it altogether. Those promoting prostitution rarely address class, race, or ethnicity as factors that make women even more vulnerable.
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‘Myth of prostitution as a choice must be challenged’ – Human Trafficking Conference
Amsterdam and other jurisdictions with sanctioned red-light districts have proven legalized prostitution results in more organized crime and more underaged girls in prostitution, said Perrier. A legal sex-for-sale industry expands the market for trafficked girls and women.
Read more: Human Trafficking Conference [Click Here]