The tree that does not bend with the wind……………..

We are the tree. The wind are all those who would seek to criminalise us.

The question is; how can we bend?? These are my ideas;

Firstly, the legal age for becoming a sex worker should be raised to 20. It could be argued that 18 is too young to make such a profound decision.

Secondly, all sex workers should have to register with the police, with a drug free, illness free medical cert and will have to satisfy police that they are acting of their own free will and solely for their own benefit. The sex worker will be issued with a photographic ID bearing only a registration number, expiration date, photograph and stage name.

The sex worker will pay a fee of €50 + €100 per week. They can choose any period from 1 week to 1 year and can repeat as often as they like. The €100 per week would partly go into a special fund to help sex workers who wish to leave the business and partly into special help for streetwalkers on drugs.

It would be illegal for anyone to pay anyone for sex who has not got this identity card. The onus would be on the client to insist on seeing a current ID card before paying any money. Anyone caught paying for sex from an unregistered person would be liable for a fine up to €10,000 or a prison term up to one year. There would be no penalty for a sex worker offering services without a registration card.

I would look to allow for two registered sex workers to share an apartment. However, if any non-client is discovered in the apartment, the sex workers’ identity cards would be permanently rescinded.

I must stress that I do not believe that the above is in any way necessary. I write this only in the belief that this current proposed legislation can only be tackled by someone offering a better alternative. I hope that this alternative will be seen as a realistic way to tackle trafficking, drugs, pimps and under age prostitutes and not drive everyone underground.

I know that many sex workers will balk at the registration and fees. However, I believe that business will be very good for those that do register. Their photo ID could also be put up on their profile.

Does anyone have any thoughts on the matter?????