Tags: Amnesty International Sex Trade Should Be Decriminalized

Amnesty International: Sex Trade Should Be Decriminalized

Image: Amnesty International: Sex Trade Should Be Decriminalized
Sex workers protest in Paris after a prostitution reform law radically altered the nation's traditionally tolerant attitude. (Jacky Naegelen/Reuters)

By    |   Wednesday, 12 Aug 2015 10:30 AM

Amnesty International is getting strong push back after approving a policy that supports decriminalizing the sex trade, saying the move would protect those working in various consensual professions.

The organization approved the resolution during its forum on Dublin on Tuesday. It calls for "full decriminalization of all aspects of consensual sex work," reported The Guardian.

Opponents pounced on the human rights group, saying the resolution would promote human trafficking.

"We recognize that this critical human rights issue is hugely complex and that is why we have addressed this issue from the perspective of international human rights standards," said Salil Shetty, the secretary general of Amnesty International. "We also consulted with our global movement to take on board different views from around the world."

A statement on the organization's website said the resolution addresses the human rights of sex workers.

"The goal of this policy is to protect the rights and safety of sex workers," said Amnesty International. "This policy is not intended, as some have suggested, to support 'pimps.' Existing research suggests that to fully protect and empower sex workers to defend their human rights, we must decriminalize both the sellers and the clients who buy sex."

Bridget Perrier, a former sex worker who later founded Sex Trade 101 to help women leave the industry in Canada, told The Guardian the decision could fuel sex trafficking.

"We feel that Amnesty International (is) supporting the men who are killing our women and it's a slap in the face," said Perrier. "This is a human rights violation in itself."

Space International, a global anti-sex trade organization, slammed Amnesty International's decision in a lengthy statement.

"We know, through the experiences of our own lives, that the sex-trade is a damaging, dehumanizing and demeaning system of exploitation which should never be decriminalized," said Space International.

"It is scarcely believable to us that you, Amnesty International, would be prepared to endorse a legal model that gives free reign to pimps and johns. In doing so, you would be prepared to actively work against your own human rights principles …"

Amnesty International said the resolution is not meant to condone sex trafficking, arguing that decriminalization would mean that "sex workers are no longer breaking the law by carrying out sex work, and are not forced to live outside the law."

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Amnesty International is getting strong push back after approving a policy that supports decriminalizing the sex trade, saying the move would protect those working in various consensual professions.
Amnesty International Sex Trade Should Be Decriminalized
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2015-30-12
Wednesday, 12 Aug 2015 10:30 AM
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