February 16, 2018

Laura Lee RIP

Laura Lee was a lady who took a stand and talked out for the right to decide. She acknowledged that there were many abuses in sex-work, but defended the right for women who chose to do it. In June 2015, legislation in Northern Ireland made it illegal to pay for sex. Her arguments about how that type of legislation made sex-workers more vulnerable need to continue to be heard.

Academic studies, observation in the real world and common sense all indicate that the illegalization of sex-work does not achieve a positive outcome.

There is a brutally stupid blind-spot in public discourse which refuses to recognize the difference between 'exploitation' (minors, slavery, trafficking, etc.) and an economic choice. Even when it comes to an 'economic choice', there are different shades of grey - it appears that people with economic means still choose to do sex work.

Instead of prohibition, legislators need to focus on how to deal with the real crimes: trafficking, slavery and the exploitation of minors. Of course, these are harder to identify...

Laura Lee Obituary
January 25, 2018

The Internet makes sex-work safer

An academic study from the University of Leicester in the UK has highlighted some interesting points about what matters for sex-workers. They claim that Beyond the Gaze (BtG) is the largest study to date about safety, working practices, attitudes and regulation.

One of the key findings was that online services were "....of considerable importance in developing services, enabling independent working and greater control over working circumstances, and improving safety strategies." The BtG study also, "confirms that levels of violent crime encountered by internet-based sex workers are considerably lower than those reported in studies of street-based workers.

Although some of these conclusions may be obvious to people working in the industry, it is good to see this type of academic study. Quantifying and describing real-world experiences will help influence public opinion and may help politicians understand and adapt legislation for the general good.

Website | Download study