LW welcomes Public Consultation on prostitution

24 June 2012

Labour Women welcomes the announcement of a Government public consultation on amending Irish prostitution laws, which provides the opportunity to send out a very strong message to anyone intending to benefit from prostitution of others.

'Labour Women first held a public event on Human Trafficking & the Sex Trade in 2008 and has been campaigning since then for action against human trafficking & prostitution, calling for legislation which would criminalise purchasing of sex,' says Katherine Dunne, Labour Women Chair.

'Evidence from Sweden suggests that this type of legislation has a deterrent effect on those who would traffic or exploit women for prostitution by reducing demand for paid sexual services. We know that 9 out of 10 prostitutes in Ireland are non-Irish, reflecting the fact that women from poorer or less developed countries with fewer choices in life are at risk of ending up in prostitution, and we also know that typically those Irish women working in prostitution have addiction issues or dysfunctional lives, again reflecting the limited choices they have in life.'

'We believe the general option has shifted, and many of those members of the public who formerly saw nothing wrong with adults buying and selling sex now see the realities of why and how persons end up in the sex industry. Awareness of how the sex trade works can help turn the tide against traffickers, pimps and those using prostitutes. We hope that from here we can further raise awareness of the violent, murky world of the sex industry and stand up against those who run and benefit from prostitution whilst supporting prostituted women to leave the sex industry and escape exploitation.'

Labour Women is part of the national 'Turn off the Red Light' campaign.

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