Prostitution In Canada Essay

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“The oldest profession in the world”; this is how prostitution is often defined or referred to. However, the reality of prostitution in the 21st century is much more complex than it was before. With the emergence of nation-states and democracy, the question of the legal status of prostitution became an issue now more controversial than ever. In Canada, this question resurfaced in the last decade with the Bedford case, which eventually led to a change in laws pertaining to prostitution with Bill-36 in 2014. While the Conservatives supported an abolitionist view on prostitution, their bill was severely criticized by the opposition parties and many groups defending human rights. Thus, a critical question arises: should prostitution be…show more content…
However, the new legislation is now facing legal challenge on the grounds that it doesn’t improve safety conditions for sex workers, which contravenes to section 7 of the Canadian Charter (Ivison A1). Still, opposition by the NPD and Liberal Party, Amnesty International and other women’s rights organization was for now unsuccessful in proving the bill to be unconstitutional (Ivison A1). In order to fully understand the debate created by Bill C-36, we must start be defining some terms pertaining to prostitution and its legal status. First, there are three main model of intervention when it comes to prostitution: legalization, decriminalization and criminalization (Phoenix 7). Legalization is when criminal sanctions are replaced by civil regulation of the contract between prostitutes and clients, such that prostitution acquires a status similar to another type of employment (8). Decriminalization refers the repeal of laws prohibiting prostitution without the institution of civil regulations, such that health and safety legislation become the main regulatory instrument (8). Finally, criminalization corresponds to the current type of legislation in Canada, which aims to repress and prohibit prostitution (7). The dubbed “Nordic model”, or abolitionist approach, describes a legal approach to prostitution which was applied in Sweden and follows the model of criminalization, but redefines sex work as a problem of violence

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