Movement for the Abolition of Prostitution

What is the Nordic Model?

The Nordic Model (sometimes known as the Sex Buyer Law) is an approach to prostitution that has also been adopted in Sweden, South Korea, Norway, Iceland, Northern Ireland, Canada, France, and Ireland. 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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Campaigners call for BMA to reject junior doctors’ policy of full decriminalisation of the sex trade

More than 30 organisations and 290 individuals have signed an open letter to the British Medical Association (BMA) calling on them to reject a new Junior Doctors’ policy backing the full decriminalisation of the sex trade as implemented in New Zealand. The motion was passed after less than 20 minutes of “debate” at the BMA Junior Doctors’ conference on 13 May.

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More than 30 organisations and nearly 300 individuals have added their name to an open letter calling on the British Medical Association (BMA) to reject a new policy passed by junior doctors backing the full decriminalisation of the sex trade (including of pimps and brothel owners) as implemented in New Zealand.

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Not even that hot night when I was 19 and slept with the door to my stuffy windowless room open to catch the breeze caused the blinkers to fall from my eyes. The blinkers that blamed my recklessness in leaving the door open and not the man who walked by and saw my smooth body lying there in all its youthful sweetness. He knew he was the only one in the building still awake and so there was a high chance he could get away with it. As indeed he did.

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There is much that Britain can learn from Ireland’s adoption of the Nordic Model and commitment to tackling male demand for prostitution.

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All brothels are illegal in the UK. Many people argue that legalising them would make the women safer and prevent the involvement of criminal gangs. However, experience where the sex trade has been legalised tells a different story. Here Jacqueline Gwynne reports on the illegal brothels in Melbourne in the State of Victoria in Australia where the sex trade is legalised.

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Anna Fisher draws attention to the apparent confluence of the vested interests of the men in Amnesty International with those of the multibillion-dollar sexual exploitation industry.

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Survivors’ Testimony

Prostitution Survivors' Testimony

Rae Story in Conversation with Laura, Chelsea, Alisa & Rebecca

“We must listen to Sex Worker’s Voices”

It is a rallying cry I have heard countless times in the last few years. It is one of the most prolific and popular phrases currently in use in relation to prostitution, so much so that it is approaching the status of the idiomatic. And like all phraseologies fiercely adopted in the service of social agendas, the statement itself becomes the politics. What it is supposed to be referencing is distorted and obliqued. Like, Destroy Power Not People, or Make Love Not War.  

Cathy

As told to Roseanne Downton. Identifying details have been changed to preserve privacy.

“I was born in the 1950s into an ordinary working class family in a city in Yorkshire. I left school with a couple of O levels, landed a pleasant job in a nice little chocolate factory. I didn’t get on with my parents, left home, and rented a little flat. Life was fabulous and carefree. I went out most nights with my girl workmates or on dates. []

Cynthia Payne

“I really hated it… I didn’t go into the business happily. It was to pay my son’s private school fees, his dad didn’t help… All the prostitutes I’ve ever known have got children and that’s why they do it. Marriage is just a form of prostitution.

There is a problem now with the women and girls who are hooked on drugs. Also I am horrified at the kind of pornography freely handed around at the moment – children, animals, violence, snuff films, women being killed in front of the cameras. 

Rebecca Mott

“I speak as a radical exited woman who cannot debate when I see and know of a constant genocide of the prostituted class being made normal. This is a genocide that is made invisible by the sex trade profiteers who will replace the dead or discarded prostituted by yet more vulnerable women and girls.

The reason I fight so relentlessly is to speak to the source of this genocide – speak to the creators of this genocide, and speak to who gains from silencing of this horror. 

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