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New York Bill Seeks to Decriminalize Sex Work

New York Bill Seeks to Decriminalize Sex Work

New York state Sen. Jessica Ramos, D-Queens, speaks at a rally of current and former sex workers on May 7 at the New York state Capitol in Albany, N.Y. (David Klepper/AP)

By    |   Monday, 10 June 2019 05:16 PM

A widespread bill aiming to decriminalize sex work was introduced to the New York State Assembly on Monday.

The Stop Violence in the Sex Trades Act, sponsored by Democratic Sens. Jessica Ramos, and Julia Salazar, was written with input from the group DecrimNY, a group that advocates for the decriminalization of the sex trade in New York.

The bill would repeal penalties for buying and selling sex, while updating other state laws concerning prostitution. It would repeal most misdemeanor charges having to do with prostitution and facilities that are used for prostitution.

“When we talk about decriminalization, we’re talking about consenting adults,” Salazar told BuzzFeed News. “Anything that involved children or coercion are things that we feel very strongly need to remain in the penal code.”

“This entire conversation really happens under the banner of reducing violence,” Ramos added. “We don’t want sex workers to experience violence at the hands of customers, or the police, or anybody.”

"For us, this is a bodily autonomy issue — our bodies, our choice — but more than that, it’s an economic issue. And it’s personal," DecrimNY organizer Jessica Raven wrote in an op-ed on Monday for the New York Daily News.

“New York criminalizes adults for trading sex for resources, but falls short in addressing root causes,” she continued. “Instead, we subject sex workers, and the people who live and work with them, to state violence. Criminal records make it harder for people in the sex trades to access resources such as housing, services and other employment.”

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A widespread bill aiming to decriminalize sex work, while still banning human trafficking and offenses concerning minors, was introduced to the New York State Assembly on Monday.
new york, prostitution, sex work, bill
253
2019-16-10
Monday, 10 June 2019 05:16 PM
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