NOTE: Petitions are DUE APRIL 1st… Last night we learned more about how Canada is facing changes to its laws about prostitution. Our M.P. Kevin Sorenson wrote several of us back about our request in January that he lead Canada to adopt the Swedish model of law. He said he forwarded our request to Minister of Justice Rob Nicholson. That’s encouraging!
We watched this short video from Evangelical Fellowship of Canada detailing the differences between Holland’s reasons for legalizing prostitution and Sweden’s approach of criminalizing johns and pimps while treating the prostituted women as victims of exploitation and violence. Click here to read the full EFC report.
Why is it ok to criminalize the johns’ and pimps’ part of the transaction if the prostituted woman is free to sell sex? It is internationally acknowledged that the average age of entry into prostitution is 12-14 years of age. Here’s the conclusion from an exhaustive journal article about the effects of prostitution reprinted on REED’s website:
“Does a john’s payment of money to a woman in prostitution erase all that we know of sexual harassment, rape, and domestic violence? The adage silence is consent is mistakenly applied to women in prostitution. We blame those who keep silent for what- ever happens to them because, the logic goes, they should have protested abuse. Women in prostitution are silent for many reasons. They are rarely given the opportunity to speak about their real lives because this would interfere with sex businesses. The silence of most of those in prostitution is a result of intimidation, terror, dissociation, and shame. Their silence, like the silence of battered women, should not be misinterpreted, ever, as their consent to prostitution.”
She is not freely consenting, she is living out the results of a life of abuse and exploitation. It is like arguing that a battered woman is silent because she consents to domestic abuse.
Last night we also celebrated answers to our prayers that burnt thicket theatre’s production of SHE HAS A NAME was well-received and sold out every show of its three-week run, bringing many people face to face with the reality of human trafficking. Steve Waldschmidt talked about getting to know one of the organizers of 4MYCANADA, on whose website he learned more about M.P. Joy Smith’s work against human trafficking in Canada.
In order to learn more about trafficking specifically in Canada we watched the first part of the following documentary called ENSLAVED AND EXPLOITED: The Story of Sex Trafficking in Canada from Hope for the Sold. Our country needs to step up and fight this rampant organized crime in new ways.
We learned about M.P. Joy Smith’s proposal for a National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking and why Canada needs a coordinated effort to connect the many separate government agencies and regional NGOs working to prevent trafficking and rescue its victims. We signed Smith’s petition to Parliament and wrote letters to Prime Minister Harper and four cabinet ministers asking them to develop and implement such a National Action Plan.
Please watch the videos, read the reports and click on the above petition and letter links BEFORE APRIL 1st when the petitions are due — join us in calling for Canada to fight the devastating reality of human trafficking right here.
God of justice and mercy, help our government do the right thing and may your kingdom come across Canada in every way. Let our land become the true north, strong and free, in actual reality.