24 novembre 2022

New York Trying to Legalize Prostitution

Posted by under: Non classé .

Since 2002, when the German law was passed, sex trafficking has reportedly at least tripled – there are now an estimated 400,000 people. Most of them are women and most come from other countries, driven by desperation and some of them are traded by third-party profiteers. Now Germany and the Netherlands are rethinking because their approach to legalizing prostitution has not had the desired effect. The bill is inspired by the « equality model, » which aims to decriminalize people in prostitution, while the purchase of sexual services, sex trafficking and brothel ownership remain illegal. This is in contrast to full decriminalization, which would give the green light to all aspects of sex trafficking. « This law was created by listening to survivors and believing, that`s the amazing part of it. In other rooms, often survivors of sex trafficking, survivors of human trafficking, survivors of prostitution, they are not heard. We need a rite of change in the criminal justice system, and the way to do that politically is to listen to survivors. According to the New York State Interagency Task Force on Human Trafficking, there were about 1,000 confirmed victims of sex trafficking in New York City between 2007 and 2019, a number that Meyers says is likely an undercount of actual victims. If the Stop Violence Act is passed, this number could increase. A 2013 study of 150 countries showed that, on average, countries where prostitution is legal reported higher inflows of human trafficking across sectors. With regard to sex work alone, trafficking in human beings in Germany gradually decreased until 2001 and then increased again after decriminalisation in 2002.

While the hugely lucrative sex trade is always looking for new ways to market women – on the internet, if not on the street – progress continues, and most importantly, prostituted women have access to services and do not have to fear criminal sanctions. We hoped that the law would have a normative effect and change the way men think about women and gender equality. And over time, our model has had a significant impact on changing norms and culture. Prostitution has decreased and support for the law has increased. The New York State legislature is debating two bills that decriminalize sex workers, but offer vastly different approaches to doing so. The Stop Violence in the Sex Trade Act aims to fully legalize « consensual » sex trafficking. The Justice and Equality for Survivors of the Sex Trade Act, adapted from the Nordic model, would decriminalize sex workers while maintaining laws punishing pimps and clients. Both would continue to punish those other than victims who are involved in the « non-consensual » side of trafficking, including human trafficking, coercion or sexual exploitation of minors. Model laws on gender equality have already been implemented in Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Canada, Ireland, Northern Ireland, France and Israel. There is evidence that the gender equality model reduces the demand for prostitution. After the introduction of the equality model, Sweden saw a 50% decrease in street prostitution and a significant decrease in the number of men who bought sexual services within two years of the introduction of the law. In Norway, five years after the introduction of the equality model, street prostitution has decreased by 30 to 60 per cent and domestic prostitution by 10 to 20 per cent.

« Sweden has seen a 50% drop in street prostitution. » The dispute over two competing prostitution laws in the New York State legislature reveals a growing rift among progressives. « The decriminalization of prostitution is supported by a powerful lobby. Alexi Meyers, a former prosecutor and advisor to the Partial Decriminalization Act, told me that if the Stop Violence Act repealed a law that criminalized the « promotion of prostitution » (referring to pimps) at the felony level, it would take « the bread and butter out of human trafficking cases. » The bill proposes to keep the most relevant laws at the level of crimes, such as: against trafficking of minors or promotion of prostitution in school zones. Two prostitution bills introduced in the New York House and Senate illustrate the division of New York Democrats on women`s rights. A bill seeks to decriminalize all sex trafficking. The other follows the equality model, a legal model that views prostitution as exploitation. It aims to reduce and, ideally, eliminate sex trafficking by decriminalizing victims of prostitution while treating their exploiters as criminals, including sex buyers, brothel owners, pimps and other profiteers. My experience lobbying in Albany on these bills has shown a growing rift within the Democratic Party on this issue. In a statement, Vance, who recently announced he would not seek re-election, said his office made the decision not to prosecute prostitution cases following discussions with sex worker rights groups. « Over the past decade, we have learned from those with lived experience and from our own experience on the ground: pursuing prostitution does not make us safer and too often achieves the opposite result by further marginalizing vulnerable New Yorkers, » he said, adding that by dismissing cases and removing previous convictions, We are bringing « a paradigm shift in our approach » to sex work.

For decades, Germany and the Netherlands have supported the legalization of prostitution, likely believing that this approach is beneficial to both those who sell in the sex industry and those who profit from the industry, such as pimps and brothel owners. Now that brothels have been closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the debate about the success of this approach is gaining visibility, and now is a good time to seriously address the issues raised. The Swedish model of gender equality decriminalizes all those exploited in prostitution by offering them services instead of punishment, while punishing those who would buy sex as a commodity. Our law holds buyers accountable, as well as pimps, not those who have fallen into prostitution through debt, manipulation or coercion. Against the full decriminalization bill is the « Justice and Equality for Survivors of the Sex Trade Act, » which was introduced by Senator Liz Krueger and Congresswoman Pamela Hunter. This legislation, based on the equality model, is also known as the Partial Decriminalization Act because it only ends arrest and detention for survivors of prostitution – not their exploiters. Unlike the Stop Violence in the Sex Trade Act, this bill includes laws against the purchase of sexual services, pimping, sex tourism and brothel ownership. In addition, the bill aims to facilitate exit from the sex trade by introducing trauma-informed services and exit strategies for prostitutes.

There is evidence that arrests of sex workers in New York City may decrease on their own. The NYPD cites a general decline in prostitution-related arrests (including of buyers and pimps, as well as workers) in recent years. Arrests increased from 1,069 in 2019 to 193 in 2021. In an emailed statement, an NYPD spokesperson told me, « The NYPD`s law enforcement priorities changed in early 2017 and continued, resulting in fewer arrests of sex workers for prostitution in recent years and a greater proportion of arrests of those who buy sex and promote sex for sale. » Jayne Bigelsen, vice president of advocacy at Covenant House, an agency that provides shelter, food, instant crisis care and other services to homeless and runaway youth, said that « a few years ago, pimps were so brazen that they put out an ad on Craig`s List saying, `Hey, you live in the CoV? We can help you earn more money. When agency staff reported the complaint to the anti-trafficking unit of the Manhattan District Attorney`s Office, an investigation revealed a trafficking ring. She noted: « With the complete decriminalization of prostitution, no one would have investigated this complaint because it would be perfectly legal to recruit our young people over the age of eighteen. It would be perfectly legal for them to set up a recruitment centre across the street from our homeless shelter. The first bill, entitled « Stop Violence in the Sex Trades Act, » would effectively legalize prostitution.

Sen. Julia Salazar and Rep. Richard Gottfried introduced the bill in partnership with DecrimNY, a coalition of organizations that « work to decriminalize, demystify and destigmatize sex trafficking in New York City and State, » according to their website. Senator Salazar also introduced legislation that would allow men to identify themselves in women`s prisons. According to German psychologist and trauma expert Dr. Ingeborg Kraus, « Prostitution leaves deep scars on the body and soul. » Rachel Moran, a survivor of the sex trade, wrote convincingly in her book « Paid For » about the trauma of prostitution caused by dissociation, which she describes as « necessary but dangerous. » She explains: « Dissociation is essential here; The prostitute cannot preserve her identity or spirit without them. On Wednesday, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr.

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