Movement for the Abolition of Prostitution

What is the Nordic Model?

The Nordic Model (sometimes known as the Sex Buyer Law, or the Swedish, Abolitionist, or Equality Model) is an approach to prostitution that has also been adopted in Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Northern Ireland, Canada, France, Ireland and Israel. It has several elements:

1. Decriminalisation of those who are prostituted

Prostitution is inherently violent. Women should not be criminalised for the exploitation and abuse they endure.

2. Buying sex becomes a criminal offence

Buying human beings for sex is harmful, exploitative and can never be safe. We need to reduce the demand that drives sex trafficking.

3. Support and exit services

High quality, non-judgemental services to support those in prostitution and help them build a new life outside it, including: access to safe affordable housing; training and further education; child care; legal, debt and benefit advice; emotional and psychological support.

A holistic approach

A public information campaign; training for police and CPS; tackling the inequality and poverty that drive people into prostitution; effective laws against pimping and sex trafficking, with penalties that reflect the enormous damage they cause.

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In 2019, the UK law commissioners ran a consultation on proposals to open up commercial-style surrogacy in the UK. We argued at the time that it was so flawed it should be abandoned and restarted, this time centring the human rights of women and children. We organised an open letter setting out some of the many ways the law commissioners had failed to adhere to good governance, equality legislation and even their own code of practice. Within about three days the letter had gained hundreds of signatures. In response, the law commissioners invited us to a meeting to expand on our concerns. This is the text of one of our presentations at that meeting.

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In this article, a woman who was herself an altruistic surrogate for some friends writes about her experiences, which led to post-traumatic stress disorder, and why she is now against all forms of surrogacy.

“Women should not be encouraged to endanger their emotional and physical health and safety for other people’s ‘need’ to have babies. Women matter. Women should not be encouraged to put ourselves second, and to risk our lives for other people.”

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The Global Network of Sex Work Projects (NSWP) is an umbrella group of hundreds of organisations around the world that purport to represent ‘sex workers,’ while in fact supporting and lobbying for the full decriminalisation of the entire sex trade, including pimps and brothel keepers (who they call ‘third parties’). This article looks at NSWP’s position on the prostitution of children and young adults, and shows how it serves to condone the paid rape of children.

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Huschke Mau, who was herself in prostitution for around 10 years, writes about the psychological and structural barriers that make it difficult, or even impossible, for women to exit prostitution and build a life for themselves outside. While some of the details are specific to Germany and its legalised prostitution system, the themes are more or less universal.

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This is a diary entry from way back when Huschke wasn’t yet called Huschke, and was sitting around in the brothel as Svenja or Charlotte or whoever.

“Enough of this. I could not do another client today, it would hurt too much. To own up to this, to open myself to this, feels lethal. It does free me somehow, but the fear of Monday is back, where I mustn’t be this vulnerable any more, where I must push aside my knowledge that this is abuse, if I don’t want another murder to be perpetrated against my soul.”

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The short Nordic Model Now! slideshow is a fully scripted presentation that provides a brief summary of the impacts of prostitution, showing that is part of a wider systemic problem, and that the Nordic Model approach provides a systemic solution – unlike full decriminalisation which would exacerbate the very problems that we need to solve. We provide downloads of the slideshow (in PowerPoint and PDF formats) and a full script (which can also be used as a handout).

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Prostitution Survivors’ Testimony

Prostitution Survivors’ Testimony

Olivia

Olivia writes from New Zealand, where the sex trade is fully decriminalised. | Traduction Française

“Hey you ‘If a woman CHOOSES to do sex work then she is empowered by sex work and you’re just a SWERF bigot crowd! Yes you! Hi. Listen to me.

I am one of those women who is said to be here by choice. No one groomed me into this choice, granted I was underage when I was first faced with this choice but it was still my own ‘choice’ as you define the word. And I still ‘choose’ this every time I get up and go into the brothel for money (which is every time I have rent/bills or need food or other necessities i.e. All the time). […]

Prostitution: Living in the Danger Zone

Interview with Laurin Crosson by Francine Sporenda

Laurin Crosson is the founder of RockStarr Ministries, a US charitable organization for helping victims of human trafficking. She runs a Safe House for those who want to exit that life. She is a survivor herself, having been trafficked for over twenty years throughout the United States. […]

Megan King

The high-class escort

My name is Megan King and I am a survivor of prostitution. I was advertised as a “high class escort”, pitched as a middle-class, well-educated young woman choosing this as a ‘career path’ out of my own free will. There seems to be this assumption within the world of prostitution that ‘escorts’ selling online are freely and willingly engaging because they ‘just love sex’ compared with the women who work on the streets who are viewed as exploited and deprived. However, I am proof that this comparison is a myth and it is my strongly held belief, that there is little difference between where you sell sex and how much you charge, to the impact of the women involved. []

Beth

“My name is Beth, I was a prostitute for five years. I never thought it would happen to me, but debt and almost becoming homeless can drive people to do things they usually wouldn’t do.

I had a good understanding with my clients but eventually I got a violent one. I was badly beaten up, raped and had my ribs cracked.

A friend got me away and put me up till I was OK. I gave up and moved back to my parents home and used debt consolidation to end my debt. […]

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