Saturday 19 August 2017

This emphasis on 'trafficking' feeds sex-slavery fantasy

Illegal immigrants who work as prostitutes are not victims but active participants, says Eilis O'Hanlon

'The nature of prostitution remains the same. It's vulnerable and damaged women, often with addiction or childhood abuse issues, degrading themselves for some temporary financial fix. Whether they're from Roscommon or Romania is beside the point'

SOMETIMES it seems as if Ruhama, the non-governmental organisation which helps women involved in prostitution, won't be happy until every kerb-crawler in Ireland is behind bars. "The sex trade is a multi-million euro industry fuelled by their demand," as chief executive Sarah Benson put it last week on the publication of the agency's annual report. "A positive step in overcoming this growth in the sex trade would be to stem demand by criminalising the buyers through legislative change."

Fair enough. If that's what they think will do the trick, go right ahead. Knock yourselves out, girls. Go get 'em. Personally, I don't think that criminalising users will have any more effect than criminalising women, which generally just wastes police and court time; or indeed any of the countless other ruses which have been tried down the centuries.

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