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Thread: Fighting trafficking or targeting sex workers?

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    Default Fighting trafficking or targeting sex workers?

    This is an interesting and ominous article about legislation recently introduced in Alaska.

    It indicates that the achilles heel of legislators is the actual definition of trafficking. The public perception of human trafficking is along the lines of the 'Anna' story. In reality, it can mean almost anything, as illustrated here.

    Below is an excerpt. The full article is here:

    http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/2...argeting-women

    A wave of concern about sex trafficking has led to news exposes, celebrity spokespeople, and laws and policies across the US promising to stop traffickers. But after Alaska governor Sean Parnell signed HB 359 in 2012, the first people charged under the new law were adult women engaged in activity that would previously be defined as simple prostitution. None of them have been accused of the behavior that most people think of when they hear “trafficking,” such as using force, or activity involving minors. Now, these women are labeled under the law, and in news reports, as sex traffickers. Some of them appear to be charged with trafficking themselves.

    In January of 2013, a few months after the law was passed, police went to a massage parlor in Kenai, a town south of Anchorage with a population of about 7,000. They arrested a 49-year-old woman, and a 19- and 20-year-old. All three were charged with prostitution. But the 49-year-old was also charged with first, second, and third degree sex trafficking, apparently because she was accused of owning the business.

    A few months later, a 24-year-old woman who had allegedly advertised on craigslist was caught in an online sting by police. It appears police did not have enough evidence to even support a prostitution charge – according to police reports, the woman would not "guarantee sexual contact" in person. She was charged with "promoting prostitution," a misdemeanor. Because of the new law, she was initially charged with sex trafficking, apparently because she was accused of advertising sexual services online, even if she didn't offer them in person.

    Maxine Doogan is a member of Community United for Safety and Protection (CUSP), an organization of Alaska's sex workers and their allies. She says the new law has criminalized practices that would make sex workers safer. "We see people who are working together, sharing space, sharing customers, can be charged with enterprising sex trafficking," Doogan explains. "The safety conditions we set up for ourselves are now being called sex trafficking."
    Last edited by Davidontour; 08-11-14 at 12:28.
    2014 in Northern Ireland:

    Number of reported attacks on sex workers 70

    Number of sex trafficking cases ZERO

  2. The Following User Says Thank You to Davidontour For This Useful Post:

    Empirical (08-11-14)

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