20 August, 2008

Barnett’s brothel plans welcome but not enough

Christian concerns already appear to be having an influence on the West Australian election, with WA Opposition Leader Colin Barnett using his opening policy salvo in the campaign to commit his party to repeal WA’s controversial prostitution laws (only passed in April) if they take office. Click here for further details.

This is a key issue which ACL and other groups have been lobbying on in WA and the policy commitment represents a big advance in the fight against legalising brothels and normalising sexual exploitation.

However, while we welcome the WA Liberal Party’s commitment, we are concerned about their plans to licence brothels in designated areas, as these kinds of containment policies do not work.

In a media release issued on Monday, ACL WA Director Michelle Pearse urged the West Australian Opposition to go further with its plans to change the State’s prostitution laws and introduce the ‘Swedish model’ which criminalises the buyers of sex and has been proven to dramatically reduce prostitution and sex trafficking. She said that both major parties need to give greater consideration to the Swedish model.

“This isn’t only about protecting families living in suburban areas from nearby brothels – although that is important. It’s also about protecting women and children caught up in the sex trade from the exploitation that even legal brothels can’t stop. We should be prosecuting the perpetrators of prostitution, and helping the victims get out,” she said. Please click here to read the media release.

posted by Danielle

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