Media Releases - 2014

EFC WELCOMES NEW LEGISLATION ON PROSTITUTION

June 4, 2014

OTTAWA – The EFC commends the government for taking seriously the task of crafting new laws in the wake of the recent Supreme Court decision to ensure that prostitution is not decriminalized.

See related EFC resources on Bill C-36 and prostitution law reform, including a presentations the EFC made to committees reviewing the bill in the House of Commons (July 2014) and the Senate (Sept. 2014).

"Our desire is to ensure vulnerable and at risk persons are protected, and that all forms of sexual exploitation be eliminated, says Bruce Clemenger, President of the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada (EFC).  “The two-pronged approach of criminal law reform and programs assisting women and youth in exiting prostitution is critical to ending prostitution.”

Bill C-36, Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act, targets the demand for paid sexual services and prohibits profiting from the sexual exploitation of another person.

“In crafting this legislation, the government has taken a big-picture view of the issue of prostitution and courageously challenged the belief that men are entitled to paid sexual access to women’s bodies; or that any person’s body can be considered a consumer good to be bought, sold or traded,” says Julia Beazley, policy analyst with the EFC. “The law is a teacher, and this law will teach coming generations of boys that it is both unacceptable and criminal to buy sex.”

“Research tells us that the vast majority of prostituted persons are not engaging in prostitution because of free, informed choice,” adds Beazley. “This Canadian model recognizes this, and targets the purchasers and perpetrators of prostitution – the individuals who put them there and keep them there.”

The legislative changes will be supported by funding and programs geared toward helping individuals exit prostitution. “It is our hope that the government will be as courageous in its work with provinces, territories and other stakeholders in ensuring robust exit services and supports as they have been in this legislation,” says Beazley.

The EFC intervened before the Supreme Court of Canada last June when the Bedford case was heard, to argue that decriminalization of prostitution leads to increased rates of human trafficking and victimization of vulnerable people.

“Ending prostitution will not happen simply or quickly because of a change in law. But the laws introduced today will help to reshape societal attitudes about prostitution, making a stronger statement that in Canada we will not tolerate or condone sexual exploitation,” says Clemenger.

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For more information or an interview contact:

Rick Hiemstra, Director of Media Relations
The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada
(613) 233-9868 x332
MediaRelations@theEFC.ca

 

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