January 24th, 2009
The Policing and Crime Bill has gone before the Scrutiny Committee and as of this week they will start hearing evidence. This process will take place from Tuesday 26th January through to 26th February. This is the bill that will tackle how prostitution is managed within the UK with the proposed aim to make purchasing and selling sex (from trafficked individuals) illegal. If you have any opinions on the proposed legal changes or have any evidence to share please do so now.
Some people have been invited to give evidence in person, but you can also submit evidence by email – even if you’ve already given evidence to consultations on prostitution/pornography previously.
You can find information about the consultation along with link to update your evidence here.
Keep your evidence short, focused and specifically about prostitution (don’t return to the pornography debate as it’s a different issue). The submissions you make will be going to government and opposition parties so you need to set out why the proposed legal changes (see outline proposal in link above) are problematic and what impact that will have. Any supporting evidence you have should be included so long as it doesn’t make your submission overly long (in which case you’ll be asked to shorten it).
You should email your MP and MPs from opposition parties with your evidence. Offer to talk to them to provide additional information as they may welcome further help in preparing their response.
If you want a list of MPs and those on the scruitiny committee to address your evidence to then please email me firstname.lastname@example.org and I can forward you details.
If you are an academic, educator, activist, sex worker, healthcare provider, outreach worker, police officer or anyone whose work involves working with prostitutes and you feel there are problems with the proposed legal changes then you should share those concerns now. A facebook group is going to be set up to help co-ordinate approaches and I’ll link to that shortly. A number of academics and activists are working hard at lobbying here so if you want me to put you in contact with them please email me and I’ll forward your details.
If you are a sex worker or punter and want to remain anonymous, or if you’re working in this area (e.g. as a police officer or outreach worker) and want to make an anonymous contribution please email me with your short submission and I’ll forward it to those actively involved in lobbying who can see it reaches the right place.
As discussed previously on this blog we’re facing some proposed legal changes which are presented as protecting sex workers but in all likelihood are not going to do that. Moreover many of the suggested legal changes so far are based on rhetoric not evidence – although we’ve been working hard to get that health and social care information shared with MPs.
There is still time to add your voice to this debate, so please take the time to add your evidence now. Please forward this information to anyone with an interest in this area so as much evidence can be submitted as possible.Tweet