The prostitution debate - Macleans.ca

The prostitution debate

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While Conservative MP Joy Smith pushes forward with a bill that would criminalize prostitution, Amy Lebovitch argues for decriminalization.

Decriminalization, on the other hand, views sex work as legitimate work, and rescinds the laws against consensual adult sex workers, whether the work is commercial or private. New Zealand and New South Wales in Australia both have decriminalization. In these places, sex workers are not required to get expensive licences, and can work without the threat of criminal charges. The cost for licences and permits is on par with those of other businesses, and sex workers pay the same taxes that any other businesses do. Decriminalization puts the power back in the hands of the sex worker so we can work under our terms while still being productive members of society. We should be able to work safely, and should be able to contribute to, and participate in, society, just like everyone else.