January 17, 2018

Sex workers want to share stories at court challenge of prostitution laws

Downtown Eastside sex workers want to share their stories when the Supreme Court of Canada hears an Ontario challenge of the country’s prostitution laws this summer.

Canada’s top court is set to hear the challenge on the laws that ban communication, keeping a bawdy house and living off the avails of prostitution in June.

Pivot Legal Society is seeking permission on behalf of the Vancouver sex workers to share their own evidence as to why the laws should be struck down.

The society’s Kerry Porth says the ban on communication, or Section 213 of the Criminal Code, hurts sex workers the most.

“213 tends to force sex workers into darkly lit, under-populated areas to avoid detection by enforcement.  They also end up making really quick decisions about clients – so, frequently getting into cars with clients before they can negotiate the terms. And that’s because both parties want to avoid detection by enforcement.”

The eastside sex workers won their own bid last fall to challenge prostitution laws in a B.C. court.

Porth says they’ll wait on the outcome of the Ontario case before they go ahead.

CKNW Vancouver News

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