Sex: My British Job. Channel 4

(760 Posts)
YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Mon 23-Sep-13 23:23:54

Anybody see this? It was just horrific. I really, really hope it reached the right audience: punters and their defenders. I doubt it, but I hope so sad

peggyundercrackers Tue 24-Sep-13 00:42:20

yes I watched it - your right it was horrific. I couldn't believe how normal the woman boss was trying to make it seem. I also couldn't believe how the woman boss got nastier as time went on and she was filthy mouthed about everything - it was all about money for her and she seemed to be prepared to do anything for money.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 14:40:45

I have it recorded to watch later.

I am shocked that this thread hasn't been filled with the usual denialists and apologists. Yet

raspberrybombe Tue 24-Sep-13 14:43:13

How odd that his thread has nowhere near the number of posts gta 5 threads do


Yes I saw it. There's another thread in telly addicts. It really did make a very difficult watch.

However, I worry that the fact that the story focuses on illegal immigrants will detract away from the fact that it is a feminist issue. Also the main 'villain' of the piece being female with the presumably male traffickers and punters being shadowy almost hidden figures detracts from some of the imo route cause of the problems.

I apologise if I haven't made myself very clear this is my first foray into the feminism boards (as a poster).

LeStewpot Tue 24-Sep-13 16:16:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 16:47:57

Interesting. I do remember an extremely powerful and horrible documentary called "Hardcore" which followed a British woman who wanted to work in the US porn industry.

She had a meeting with the unspeakably vile Max Hardcore who was pressuring her to such an extent, that the documentary maker stepped in and stopped her from filming with him. A recap of the documentary is here:

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 16:48:09
Beachcomber Tue 24-Sep-13 17:02:36

I didn't see it but thought you might be interested in this review. Sounds like grim viewing in more ways than one.

One other thing I found slightly uncomfortable was the role of Nick Broomfield in all this. The celebrated filmmaker is the director – it's his film, he should take much of the credit for it. But I also think he would have done well to have been invisible in this one. I know that's not what he does, Nick Broomfield films are partly about Nick Broomfield, but this time it would have been smarter to disappear. And that's all down to the subject matter. Because what you have here is this man sitting comfortably in his big car, and a woman doing things she clearly doesn't always feel totally comfortable with, for him. Do you see what I'm saying? There's almost an awkward irony to it – perceived (only by me?), not real, but avoidable.

raspberrybombe Tue 24-Sep-13 17:45:52

it felt weird that it built up to this big let down

no update, no consequences (it appeared) and even when that 'must have a' was shouting at the undercover to shut up, the men didnt seem to step in, and her face showed fear

pointless, felt like ' here u go, look how bad this is, but we wont do anything about it'

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 18:11:56

There are actually some decent comments BTL on that Guardian article <faints>.

SinisterSal Tue 24-Sep-13 18:43:08

Still, it's refreshing to see the anti Belle du Jour

If it gets people thinking that prostitution isn't all empowering glamour with a selection of kind sexy gentlemen it will have done good in the world

FloraFox Tue 24-Sep-13 18:44:39

The programme was awful. If the undercover reporter had £20,000 of debts to pay to a money lender, how much more quickly would she have succumbed to the pressure? The idea that these women are exercising any sort of agency or choice is repellent.

They should have confronted some of the punters outside the house, especially the one who peed everywhere then asked for a discount. As usual, the men were pixelated out.

PhilosophicalInvestigations Tue 24-Sep-13 23:14:44

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 24-Sep-13 23:31:25


Are you seriously saying that men visiting prostitutes is "the fault" of British women?


AnyFucker Tue 24-Sep-13 23:32:20

Ignore and report the derailer.

FloraFox Wed 25-Sep-13 06:59:44

PI - a striking example (as was this whole programme) of the role of racism in prostitution. Women as racialised sexual commodities.

SinisterSal Wed 25-Sep-13 10:06:08

what sort of stupid statement is that.

long words don't make what you say clever

the government should be looking more into the source of the demand for prostitution – the sexual conservatism of the British woman?


<wipes eyes, composes self>



PhilosophicalInvestigations Fri 27-Sep-13 02:46:05

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

DropYourSword Fri 27-Sep-13 02:54:06

FFS PI I really really hope you're not being serious because your comments have made my fucking blood boil.

FloraFox Fri 27-Sep-13 05:24:44

You could sense the financial desperation of the women. It's such a shame for British men that British women are not so financially destitute that they will shag a bunch of desperate losers for a tenner.

Poor, poor men. Forced to visit these hovels and abuse the desperate women therein. Won't somebody think of the punterz?

grimbletart Fri 27-Sep-13 10:57:04

Prostitution exists in every single country in the world. So presumably Philosophical is saying that prostitution in every single country in the world is the fault of women. I think Philosophical needs to get out more.

minnehaha Fri 27-Sep-13 22:26:29

As a 'defender' - not watched the programme yet but it was easy to get it's drift from the trailers.
If any of you cared to seriously read P.Net etc, you'd see there is condemnation of exploitative practices.
Just because you lot with your superior moral standards condemn prostitution - it ain't going to disappear anytime soon. So hows about making sure the women involved are SAFE?.....making it illegal or stigmatising the men is NOT going to achieve that.

minnehaha Fri 27-Sep-13 22:33:52

To put it more succinctly - it's YOUR attitudes that enable such exploitation. Have a think ladies............

GoshAnneGorilla Fri 27-Sep-13 22:42:37

How exactly does patting men on the head for paying for sex make them less likely to abuse women?

In the decrim paradise of NZ, 50% of street prostitutes have been raped at work, as have at least 10% of indoor workers. Does that sounds good to you.

Finally as someone who defend s P net because it's apparently so good for your business, I don't think you can play the dripping with concern card either.

I'm sure you'll be running back to your blog soon to call us all ugly and jealous and other such superb enlightened and feminist terms.

ReviewsOffers Fri 27-Sep-13 22:45:07

No it fucking isn't Minnehaha that's really annoying that you say that.

MY attitudes harm no one, ffs. Me, sitting at home with the remote and a cuppa is putting people at risk? And not the creepy fuckers out and about, physically in the brothels?

Have a think yourself, lady. Nonsense.

minnehaha Fri 27-Sep-13 22:49:39

As I've recently retired from the business, I have no income to protect; I'm just being a realist whist you lot are stuffing your own heads up the arse of feminist propaganda

ReviewsOffers Fri 27-Sep-13 23:03:56

FGS say something that makes sense....meaningless self serving drivel

GoshAnneGorilla Fri 27-Sep-13 23:04:31

Ah realism, aka defending the status quo.

Once upon a time domestic violence, no financial power, widespread sexual harassment and worse - all of these were an accepted part of the status quo for women.

Thankfully for all of us, feminists, didn't consider it "realism" to not try and eliminate any of those things and while we still face problems, huge strides forward have been made.

So why should prostitution be any different?

Frodosmum Sat 28-Sep-13 03:30:19

Most documentaries on prostitution show only heterosexual male clients, but gay women also pay women for sex, and gay men pay male prostitutes for sex, without any women being involved in any way. Even some heterosexual women pay male escorts for sex, despite the fact that women can easily get sex without being attractive or having to exert any serious effort. It’s a much more varied phenomenon than we are led to believe.

ReviewsOffers Sat 28-Sep-13 07:20:51

It's mostly men paying women though - of course all kinds of people do it, what figures there are and what anecdotes we have show it's overwhelmingly men doing the paying, to women and to a lesser extent young men.

I find it hard to believe that any documentary maker or anyone of that ilk with disregard the sensationalist titillation of showing gay women looking for paid sex.

I have never heard of a gay woman visiting a brothel.
I am happy to admit I don't know every gay woman in the world, though.

Frodosmum Sat 28-Sep-13 08:54:20

I think a few were shown on previous documentaries on brothels in Australia and America. It was a few years ago. I recall the prostitutes saying that they get women clients.

Frodosmum Sat 28-Sep-13 08:56:59

One of the heterosexual women paying a man for sex on that Channel 4 documentary on 30+ virgins was a 40-year-old female Christian virgin who wanted her first time to be with somebody who knew what he was doing.

ReviewsOffers Sat 28-Sep-13 09:00:09

That's what I mean - where they exist it is concentrated on, for the wow factor, iykwim.

GoshAnneGorilla Sat 28-Sep-13 09:43:37

Frodomum - "Women do it too" is a massive derail. Statistically, punters are overwhelmingly male.

Frodosmum Sun 29-Sep-13 03:52:26

Mostly male, not necessarily ‘overwhelmingly’. Would it matter if it were 49%/51%?

How can this possibly be a ‘derail’? Are you saying that female clients of prostitutes ‘get a pass’ because of their gender? That would be simple reverse sexism. On the last-but-one Channel 4 programme on prostitution, a disabled male client was described by a hardline feminist academic as ‘still engaging in abusive behaviour’ while losing his virginity in a brothel and that disability was not an excuse. Disabled and female clients paying for sex may both be in a minority, but if the principle is valid it must hold for any client, male or female.

Not everything which does not fit your agenda has to be a ‘derail’. The documentary unveiled a fair number of unsavoury issues.

mathanxiety Sun 29-Sep-13 04:14:53

Frodosmum, the assumption that women can get sex without putting forth much effort is irrelevant, as is the assumption that the sexual experience is what is being paid for. Part of the experience of paying a prostitute for sex is the little glow the buyer gets from knowing that money can buy something most people wouldn't freely give the average punter just for the asking, right after walking in off the street. It's the instant gratification regardless of the real desire or lack thereof of the victim that is being bought, the sense of having the power to do that to another person just by dint of having whatever it costs in your wallet, when you feel like your ego trip.

mathanxiety Sun 29-Sep-13 04:16:20

No matter what the circumstances, Frodosmum, nobody has an absolute right to a sex life or a sexual experience.

WhentheRed Sun 29-Sep-13 06:06:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mathanxiety Sun 29-Sep-13 06:15:43

Or an ego trip.

BelaLugosisShed Sun 29-Sep-13 11:38:36

Not directly related to the OP but I was flicking through our local paper yesterday and came across an advert for an "escort" service, they apparently specialise in visiting truckers in their lorries, just how fucking desperate do you have to be as a woman that you would put yourself at such risk by going to a lorry parked up in a layby somewhere?
It really shocked me and when I read it out to DH he couldn't believe it was legal to advertise such a "service" sad .

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Sun 29-Sep-13 23:38:44

Sorry, I haven't been back to this thread.

TBH, I deliberately avoided it because I just knew there would be posters come to justify prostitution and I couldn't stand to read that soo soon after seeing such a heartbreaking documentary.

I agree that the parts with Nick Broomfield in were distasteful; he got to self-publicise from a safe distance and be super-sympathetic to the women whilst facilitating her to get more and more involved with god-knows-what lasting damage. And him acting as her punter was just unnecessary.

But it was still a powerful film and I don't fucking care if 90% of prostitution isn't like this (i.e. it's all with healthy, happy, enthusiastic women and considerate, kind, respectful punters <hollowlaugh>) is crystal clear that some prostitution situations are as grim/bleak/coerced/forced as evidenced in this documentary and punters are not in a position to know whether they are buying from a 'happy-hooker' or unhappy/trafficked/forced woman.

zero-tolerance on buying sex is the only way to try to protect these women.

MInnie, PI, et al. please actually watch the programme (4OD) and post your thoughts.

I used to have a friend bela that lived opposite a lorry park and we would watch women come to the park and go from cab to cab. We were only around 12, but we knew what was going on. Think it's quite a common thing sad Some of them must be family men.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Sun 29-Sep-13 23:54:19

And frodosmum So what if women buy sex too? I don't care who buys's wrong. I care about the woman (and the men) selling.

And the few (I do believe it is few ) women (and men) who actually choose to sell sex willingly and enjoy their job and are immune to later physical/mental repercussions...I don't mind one jot restricting your freedom to prostitute because your actions have negative repercussions on society. Making selling your body (FYI allowing groping/penetration/control of your body is not the same as selling your time/effort at say, a cleaning's just not) a viable option encourages exploitation of the vulnerable and entitlement by men (and frodos lesbians)to consume and objectify women (and men).

It's all round BAD.

FFS just have a wank. (and for those who say they just want human contact/GFE, do you really think touchng/cuddling/kissing/penetrating a possibly scared/ scarred/ resentful/ desperate/ forced person is the answer?...that isn't 'human contact' that is abuse).

Frodosmum Mon 30-Sep-13 04:15:38

No matter what the circumstances, Frodosmum, nobody has an absolute right to a sex life or a sexual experience.

I am aware that this follows logically from the fact that a sexual experience, like getting a job, requires the consent of a second party. However, the pleasure obviously taken in this statement smacks of dour, sunless, Scandinavian Presbyterianism. This is why male journalists of a certain age think that feminism is only an anti-sex movement.

People also have the right not to encounter unnecessary interference in their sex lives. This is usually the ‘res’ in sexually contentious matters.

It's the only argument that gets political traction.

That means nothing in terms of substantive argument or the justice of the case.

Or an ego trip.

I don’t buy the ‘ego trip’ theory. From what I have seen and heard, particularly via the TV programmes, of the experience the punter gets, that does not really make sense.

and frodos lesbians

For reference, my understanding is that the female punters are not all gay: some are bisexual/bi-curious. Come to think about it, I suspect that this also applies to some male clients of gay male prostitutes.

Female punters are relevant because the nature of the phenomenon is not fully understood or agreed upon.

FFS just have a wank

I would hate to see you working the Samaritans suicide helpline when male clients come on: ‘Think what you have to live for: work, masturbation and death’.

GoshAnneGorilla Mon 30-Sep-13 05:03:56

Frodo - have you actually seen the documentary in question? I suggest you watch it (since it's what the thread's actually about) before tossing the insults out.

Frodosmum Mon 30-Sep-13 06:57:02

If you mean the Monday night C4 documentary, I did see it.

Frodosmum Mon 30-Sep-13 07:37:22

No matter what the circumstances, Frodosmum, nobody has an absolute right to a sex life or a sexual experience.

I hope that you realise that this applies to other things in life. For example, nobody has an absolute right to relationships or an absolute right to have children. These also require the active consent of a second party, but you don’t hear a lot about that.

Grennie Mon 30-Sep-13 09:17:49

Of course no one has a right to a relationship or children either, although some men think they do - mail order brides.

Amsterdam legalised prostitution. The police and Government are now saying it was a disaster. Underage children, trafficked women and violence all increased as a result. Legalisation has been tried in a number of places, it never works.

Has anyone heard of the Nordic Model? This is where you decriminalise those in prostitution, but criminalise the punters. And give help to those in prostitution to help them out of it. There is a UK group lobbying for our Government to adopt this model.

However, the pleasure obviously taken in this statement smacks of dour, sunless, Scandinavian Presbyterianism. This is why male journalists of a certain age think that feminism is only an anti-sex movement

I think that male journalists of a certain age who think feminism is an anti-sex movement are a) not listening to feminists, b) not very clever, c) can't help thinking that women being equal humans somehow takes away something from their own (the male) enjoyment of sex or d) all of the above.

People also have the right not to encounter unnecessary interference in their sex lives

That rather depends upon their predilections, no? It depends upon whose 'rights' you think are more important. The right of people (mostly men) to purchase sex, if that's what they want. The right of other people (mostly women) to sell sex if that's what they wish to do for whatever reason. Or the rights of women not to have their sexual experiences commoditised, packaged and sold; their right not to be abused as a direct result of other's desires to pay for sex or to make this their business.

I would hate to see you working the Samaritans suicide helpline when male clients come on: ‘Think what you have to live for: work, masturbation and death’

I can't see what this adds to the argument. Would it help a suicidal man get over his serious mental health problems (depression etc) to be told it's OK, because you can pay to have sex with a woman who will pretend to like you? And how is the idea that he might be paying to rape or abuse someone (which he might find very arousing, but let's assume he's a decent but desperately lonely bloke) going to help him have a happy life?

Female punters are relevant because the nature of the phenomenon is not fully understood or agreed upon

You may be correct that there is a problem with female punters that nobody has yet realised. I don't know enough to discuss this.

Are adult men trafficked in the same way adult women are, do we know? Note I am not talking about very young men / children who are to be prostituted for mainly men to have sex with.

Can you tell us more about the problem of female punters?

Grennie Mon 30-Sep-13 09:43:32

Female punters who are not with their male partner e.g. buying a woman for a threesome, are very rare. Some women copy what men do, thinking that is somehow empowerment. Still doesn't make it right.

Beachcomber Mon 30-Sep-13 10:16:46

With regards to female punters - is there a big population of women paying to have sex with male children?

No. There. Isn't.

The pretence that women's participation in paying for sex is anything like men's, is hollow. It is nonsense.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Mon 30-Sep-13 13:20:07


I would hate to see you working the Samaritans suicide helpline when male clients come on: ‘Think what you have to live for: work, masturbation and death’.

You seriously think the Samaritans would advocate using/abusing potentially vulnerable people for cash, possibly contributing to a decline in their mental health.

What a bizarre argument.

Prostitution is not an acceptable replacement for consensual and enjoyable sexual/physical/social contact due to the damage it does to others.

And I reiterate, so what if a small percentage of buyers are hetero/homosexual women? They are exploiting the sellers in the same way as men, it doesn't suddenly make it ok confused Why the hell would it hmm And, as they are not even a significant minority, why focus on them?

And, you say you saw the programme? Did you think that sort of life was hunkydory? Exploiting desperate and damaged immigrant women. The talk about men removing condoms had me heaving.

Frodosmum Mon 30-Sep-13 14:57:46

why focus on them

Why ignore them? It is one of the most interesting parts of the discussion.

The Samaritans are a non-profit organisation. My point above was that if you had a client on the line who was suicidal because of sex starvation, 'FFS have a wank' (as suggested above) might not be the most sensitive advice.

grimbletart Mon 30-Sep-13 15:05:28

Anyone who knows anything about the Samaritans Frodosmum knows they are non-judgemental i.e. they do not inflict their personal opinions on callers. They also know they never tell any caller what to do. But in their own lives Samaritans will have a cross section of personal opinions like anyone else.

Citing the Samaritans is a rubbish comparison.

I don't think most of us are here for an "interesting" abstract discussion. The interestingness (or lack of same) is a by product. We are engaging in a critical discourse, we want to talk about what's important.

It's actually quite harmful in my opinion to treat these things as light chat chat that doesn't matter. It matters.

Sex starvation is a new one on me. I've just been reading a paper on the topic basic human needs. It says "basic biological needs for safe drinking water, adequate foodstuffs, preventative and emergency medical care, and secure and habitable shelter (Wilson 2003). Furthermore, citizens worldwide should have the right to free and unimpeded access to educational opportunities as well as meaningful work (Felice 2003)"

Oddly, nowhere does it say that all men have the basic need to insert their penis into a woman's body.

Now I predict you're thinking you're going to say something about sex being necessary for basic survival of the species, but that's doing OK without prostitution.

...have to dash, can't proof read this shock

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Mon 30-Sep-13 15:42:13

The Samaritans are a non-profit organisation. My point above was that if you had a client on the line who was suicidal because of sex starvation, 'FFS have a wank' (as suggested above) might not be the most sensitive advice

And at what point did I ever say I would say that in a hypothetical situation whilst hypothetically working for the Samaritans.

How utterly, utterly bizarre confused

My original wank comment was meant to point out that if you are horny and want an orgasm...there is no need to seek out a prostitute or use porn (filmed prostitution), just masturbate. I appreciate some people strongly want physical human contact but I dont think that should be a commodity to buy (for lots of reasons already mentioned...suh as the documentary you are yet to comment on).

ParvatiTheWitch Mon 30-Sep-13 16:02:06

"Sex starvation"? Behave, that doesn't even exist except as a misguided concept in someone's head.
We all have needs, women as well as men. As a woman, I have never felt the burning need to pay someone who doesn't want to fuck me, to fuck me.
I saw the documentary and was impressed that it was all about the women and the hardships that they faced. So glad it wasn't gratuitous, or made to seem "sexy". Nick Broomfield is a piece of work though; when that undercover journalist was saying she felt suicidal, I couldn't believe he encouraged her to go back in there.

ParvatiTheWitch Mon 30-Sep-13 16:06:44

What's P net please?

That sentence, "buying a woman" is one of the grimmest sentences ever. It's almost like harking back to the days of slavery, with the "buying a slave", urgh.

ReviewsOffers Mon 30-Sep-13 18:14:30

it's amazing anyone could watch that and dismiss it so utterly.

Frodosmum Mon 30-Sep-13 22:52:28

Given the vertical thinking demonstrated in the comments about my Samaritans reference, it is clear that some people are playing the "loveable buffoon" to provoke a reaction. Either that, or there are many conveyancing solicitors on this site.

As sex starvation is not generally experienced by women, they will not tend to identify with it as a problem.

I worked as a student counsellor in my final year and for some time after graduating, and sex starvation was a prominent concern among young males. It is an embarrassing subject for men to discuss, but when they let their guard down they talk about it in terms of depression, pain and suicidal thoughts. It is clearly crucial to their psychological well-being. It reminded me of that chap in the 1960s who conducted maternal deprivation experiments on infant monkeys, separating them from their mothers to assess the emotional and mental fallout:

"Harry Frederick Harlow was an American psychologist best known for his maternal-separation, dependency needs, and social isolation experiments on rhesus monkeys, which demonstrated the importance of care-giving and companionship in social and cognitive development.
Harlow’s experiments were controversial; they included rearing infant macaques in isolation chambers for up to 24 months, from which they emerged severely disturbed."

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Mon 30-Sep-13 23:01:33


I am embarrassed for you. You're reasoning is beyond bizarre: comparing horny men to orphan monkeys?!

You show a lot of compassion for sex-starved you have any for the women they use; the women shown in the documentary?

"Sex starvation" does not justify using and abusing potentially vulnerable people for cash. HTH

Beachcomber Mon 30-Sep-13 23:23:19

What the fuck is 'sex starvation' when it is at home?

Please don't answer that.

FloraFox Mon 30-Sep-13 23:32:55

"As sex starvation is not generally experienced by women, they will not tend to identify with it as a problem."

What a load of bull. What you are describing is using your role as a student counsellor to socialise men into believing they have an entitlement to sex. Well done.

CaptChaos Mon 30-Sep-13 23:45:56

Beachcomber What the fuck is 'sex starvation' when it is at home?

It's an utter fallacy, that's what it is. Comparing such a tub of crap to Harlow's work is.... well, it's pretty ridiculous.

Unless we're trying to compare using a human being as a glorified wank sock to maternal deprivation, then it's also a strawman. The only reason young men feel suicidal if they don't get the sex they believe they deserve, is because society, patriarchal society, teaches them that they are entitled to sex, as often and as much as they want, which plays right into the realms of rape culture. No one is entitled to sex, no one has any right to sex.

I'm actually pretty shocked that anyone could have such odd ideas. No idea why I'm shocked though, people seem capable of believing all sorts of crap.

Frodosmum Tue 01-Oct-13 00:03:07

So you do admit that there are human needs other than the basic biological survival needs referred to above? This was being denied on this thread. And all I had to do was remind you of the more ‘female-friendly’ example of maternal deprivation, rather than sexual deprivation, and suddenly everyone is nodding in agreement.

Frodosmum Tue 01-Oct-13 00:10:51

Before Harlow, concepts such as maternal deprivation and the sensibilities of animals drew a complete blank with most of the population, but this changed, particularly when the film of the distressed animals was made public. Indeed, it is believed that this was the point at which the animal liberation movement was born. I submit that much of human sexuality is, similarly, poorly understood and that there are surprising new discoveries yet to be made.

Frodosmum Tue 01-Oct-13 00:16:19

For the record, counsellors do not ‘socialise’ or brainwash clients. Much of the work involves the fact that the latter can talk in a situation in which they will be listened to and understood and in which they will receive some empathy. Suggestions of active intervention are ill-founded.

FloraFox Tue 01-Oct-13 00:28:45

"I submit that much of human sexuality is, similarly, poorly understood"

Don't let that stop you trotting out crap about sex starvation and women not experiencing it though.

No suggestion of active intervention was made.

Frodosmum Tue 01-Oct-13 00:55:50

"socialis(ing) men into believing they have an entitlement to sex" would surely constitute active intervention?

"sex starvation and women not experiencing it though"

Please explain yourself. In what circumstances do you think that this happens to women? So that there is no misunderstanding.

FloraFox Tue 01-Oct-13 01:02:22

A counsellor is involved in socialising men by disseminating cultural and social norms, including the idea that men are entitled to have access to women's bodies for sex and/or that they have a "need" for sex.

Sex starvation does not exist for men or women.

Men and women both experience prolonged periods when they would like to have sex but cannot, for a number of reasons.

mathanxiety Tue 01-Oct-13 01:16:26

How is giving empathy not active intervention?

Mathanxiety -- No matter what the circumstances, Frodosmum, nobody has an absolute right to a sex life or a sexual experience.
Frodosmum -- I hope that you realise that this applies to other things in life. For example, nobody has an absolute right to relationships or an absolute right to have children. These also require the active consent of a second party, but you don’t hear a lot about that.

Of course I realise this applies to every area of human life. On a thread about prostitution I think it was fair to use the example of a sexual experience as one item nobody has an absolute right to, and since you were suggesting that there are valid reasons why it is fine for one person to buy an experience of the body of another it was an appropriate response.

Nobody has an absolute right to have children or anything else they have their heart set on even if they can afford the item. Assessing the impact of satisfying our desires on others or on the planet we leave to our descendants if any is necessary before we decide how to get our needs filled. The decision to have a child in particular requires much thought and responsible consideration since the child will not be consulted about its desire for life before it is conceived. Or probably afterwards either. The decision to acquire an ivory figurine or goods known to be stolen are other examples where your decision might be easy. But you also might want to think twice about a Hummer or any other vehicle that will pass anything but a petrol pump, or clothing made in a sweatshop. I'm sure there are many other examples.

Frodosmum Tue 01-Oct-13 01:52:19

"The decision to have a child in particular requires much thought and responsible consideration since the child will not be consulted about its desire for life before it is conceived."

Very good. I have waited decades to hear someone say that.

Frodosmum Tue 01-Oct-13 01:55:03

“How is giving empathy not active intervention?”

Because one is sitting there on one’s arse not moving or talking?

Frodosmum Tue 01-Oct-13 01:59:20

“A counsellor is involved in socialising men by disseminating cultural and social norms, including the idea that men are entitled to have access to women's bodies for sex and/or that they have a ‘need’ for sex.”

There is no way in which such a strong and specific desire, such as sexual desire, could be conjured up out of nothing. It often arises in the body before the person reaching puberty has even been told the basic facts of life.

WhentheRed Tue 01-Oct-13 02:58:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mathanxiety Tue 01-Oct-13 05:35:08

I think perhaps Frodosmum believes a man's balls will turn blue and fall off unless he gets some frequently.

How does one give empathy without moving or talking?

Frodosmum Tue 01-Oct-13 08:11:30

'Punters...they also want to control, dominate and abuse.'

How do you know? If you had said 'pimps', I wouuld agree.

Frodosmum Tue 01-Oct-13 08:14:15

"How does one give empathy without moving or talking?"

It's a gift. Empathy is more a state of being.

The posters above must also think that I have time-travelling powers, in addition to my Derren Brown suggestion talents, because the clients came to the office with the problem already in their heads.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 01-Oct-13 09:11:55

Frodo - Flora has already explained that to you, our patriarchal society socialises men to believe that women's bodies are something they are entitled to.

Note that word: entitled.

I cannot believe any could be "poor, poor menz" after watching that documentary.

Frodosmum you seem angry about the idea that men might be denied their access to women to the point of putting forward arguments that are very difficult to follow.

Wassup with that?

CaptChaos Tue 01-Oct-13 09:29:08

Empathy is an active process involving a series of actions/inactions, it sure as hell isn't a 'state of being' and I am amazed that anyone would suggest or teach that it is.

Punters want to abuse, control and dominate because that's what they pay to do. To have sex on someone who isn't actively willing and wouldn't be if they hadn't been paid for is abuse. There is a whole website dedicated to making sure that punter's money is only spent where the woman is not going to make trouble/be unattractive/be upset/not allow the man to do whatever he wants. To suggest that punters are there purely for a sexual experience they couldn't get elsewhere merely shows that you don't understand the dynamics of prostitution.

mathanxiety Tue 01-Oct-13 20:02:56

"How does one give empathy without moving or talking?"
It's a gift. Empathy is more a state of being.

If a counsellor feels empathy but does not show it in any way then it is as useful to the other person as the silent workings of the counsellor's digestive process.

Empathy is no more a state of being than my desk is. Show it or it goes completely to waste. You seem to have the strange gift of completely ignoring the effect of behaviour (or complete lack of behaviour in the case of your weird take on empathy) on others as demonstrated by your view of people having a right to use the body of another as long as they have needs that must be met, and the bizarre view of empathy as a state of being, not in any way communicated to the other person.

In your callous perspective only the needs or feelings of one individual matter -- you seem incapable of accepting that everyone has needs that are equally deep and that those needs have to be reconciled and ordered.

FloraFox Tue 01-Oct-13 20:32:35

The Empathic Mannequin confused

WhentheRed Tue 01-Oct-13 21:04:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ReviewsOffers Tue 01-Oct-13 21:15:14

but Red HIS BALLS WERE PROBABLY BLUE! Didn't consider that did you? Probably because you have no concept of desire, much less thwarted desire.

WhentheRed Tue 01-Oct-13 21:21:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

minnehaha Tue 01-Oct-13 21:30:06

"Punters want to abuse, control and dominate because that's what they pay to do." CRAP!!

FloraFox Tue 01-Oct-13 21:52:56

And when, the women would not be counted as coerced or trafficked - simply making a free choice to improve their economic situation. Unless of course you count the fact that they are £20,000 in debt to illegal moneylenders to pay for their trip, unable to work legally and subject to bullying and manipulation. But that's not important, they exercised agency so it's all okay.

WhentheRed Tue 01-Oct-13 22:27:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mathanxiety Tue 01-Oct-13 22:36:12

Can you elaborate on that, Minnehaha?

How is paying someone for use of their body to wank into or onto -- a sexual experience they probably wouldn't be freely given by that complete stranger -- not a form of abuse, control or domination?

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 01-Oct-13 22:46:13

Because all Minnehaha's "clients" are luvvley men married to horrible women like us. Apparently hmm

CaptChaos Tue 01-Oct-13 23:03:05

Another erudite addition to the conversation, Minnehaha. Care to explain how using someone as a wank sock isn't abusive, dominating or controlling?

Frodosmum Wed 02-Oct-13 00:02:58

I knew that I would regret the state-of-being joke.

“Frodo - Flora has already explained that to you, our patriarchal society socialises men to believe that women's bodies are something they are entitled to.”

Flora has, indeed, presented her theory with regard to this matter, without describing the precise mechanism of the ‘socialising’, or brainwashing, she suggests, or providing any evidence.

If you really believe that people can be so easily socialised you must surely allow the male theory that women are socialised to be sexually less active and more relationship-oriented than they would naturally be?

“Frodosmum you seem angry about the idea that men might be denied their access to women…”

I reject the idea that men think in terms of “access to women” and “entitlement”. This is a female construct.

“To suggest that punters are there purely for a sexual experience they couldn't get elsewhere merely shows that you don't understand the dynamics of prostitution.”

Your opinion of the dynamics of prostitution! Have you ever asked a punter?

“…as demonstrated by your view of people having a right to use the body of another as long as they have needs that must be met…”

Another misrepresentation: I have specifically said that I do not believe that. Please refer to the above discussion about people having no right to sex, love, relationships, children, etc. because they involve a second party.

mathanxiety Wed 02-Oct-13 00:19:06

I thought it was funny, Frodo.

When it comes to the socialising of men to believe that women's bodies are something they are entitled to, you only have to look at the matter of rape.

Here's a quick overview of what society tells men about women, from Wikipedia, for your convenience.

The title if the article is 'marital rape' and it explores the context in which this crime was not considered to exist until very recently. If you were born before 1991 in the UK you lived at a time when the concept was held to be impossible.

"Problems in prosecuting spousal rape

The criminalization of marital rape does not necessary mean that these laws are enforced in practice, with lack of public awareness, as well as reluctance or outright refusal of authorities to prosecute being common in many countries. For instance, in Ireland, where marital rape was made illegal in 1990, by 2006 there had been only one person convicted of marital rape (in a case which involved a man who raped his wife shortly after she had given birth and when she was still bleeding).[130] In many countries, most often, in practice, there will be no prosecution except in extreme cases that involve a very high level of violence.

There have been many problems with prosecuting the perpetrators of spousal rape, chief amongst them has been the reluctance of the various legal systems to recognize it as a crime at all. However, criminalization has opened a new set of problems. To take an example in the United Kingdom, such a category of rape was only recognized by a 1991 House of Lords decision known simply as R v R (1991 All ER 481). While most parties agreed with the House of Lords' motive in making the decision, there were many who were of the opinion that the decision involved post facto criminalization, since the House of Lords were imprisoning spouses for doing what was once, according to the law, their right.

Another problem results from prevailing social norms that exist in certain cultures. In order for any law to be successfully enforced, the acts which it prohibits must be perceived by society as abusive. As such, even if a jurisdiction enacts adequate laws against marital rape, in practice, these laws are ignored if the act is not socially considered a crime. For example, in many parts of the world, where women have few rights, it is considered unthinkable for a woman to refuse her husband's sexual demands; far from being seen as an act of abuse of a wife, marital rape is seen as an incident provoked by the wife who refused to perform her duty: for instance one survey found that 74% of women in Mali said that a husband is justified to beat his wife if she refuses to have sex with him. [131]

Other problems arise from the fact that, even in countries where marital rape is illegal, many people are not aware of the existing laws. Because in most parts of the world marital rape laws are very new, many people do not know of their existence. In many cultures, traditional ideas about marriage are deeply rooted in the conscience of the population, and few people know that forcing a spouse to have sex is illegal. For instance, a report by Amnesty International showed that although marital rape is illegal in Hungary, in a public opinion poll of nearly 1,200 people in 2006, a total of 62% did not know that marital rape was a crime: over 41% of men and nearly 56% of women thought it was not punishable as a crime in Hungarian law, and nearly 12% did not know.[132] In Hong Kong, in 2003, 16 months after the criminalization of marital rape, a survey showed that 40% of women did not know it was illegal.[133]"

From the link..

mathanxiety Wed 02-Oct-13 00:20:08
Frodosmum Wed 02-Oct-13 02:38:14

Thanks for the link. I knew about that particular issue from academic legal studies. This is one of the many reasons why us older generation, 1970s feminists regarded marriage as a bad thing, along with the whole women-as-baby-making machines, etc. thing. We felt badly betrayed by later generations of feminists for sweeping that under the carpet and re-embracing these things.

In practice, men who committed marital rape could be, and were, prosecuted for other offences, such as sexual assault, although it must be said that, in the past, the police were notoriously reluctant to get involved in ‘domestics’ of any kind. That was a different nightmare.

Knowledge of marital rape, and this applies to those opinion polls, reflects, in part, the fact that the issue just wouldn’t cross the mind of most people. I regard this as a healthy attribute. We might have stumbled through the centuries with no legislators bothering to take responsibility for this, but it would not even occur to the normal male to force himself physically upon his wife. The bottom line, even with regard to crusty old British judges, was that you could get a divorce on the basis of “unreasonable behaviour” in a sexless marriage (the lack of sex could be seen as evidence that the marriage had broken down) or an annulment on the grounds of non-consummation. I don’t think that this led to an aura of "socialised" entitlement in the way it has been discussed here.

With regard to those parts of the world in which women have few rights, there is a deliberately instituted and maintained across-the-board anti-female prejudice. Most of it goes back to primitive times: animal values, you might say, but people in the power structures will find new ways in which to soil the mattress. In Iran, divorce courts will suggest, almost to the point of parody, that a woman who brings a case against her husband “behave more reasonably” toward the husband. Religion and marriage are two of the chief culprits.

WhentheRed Wed 02-Oct-13 03:30:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MsCarriage Wed 02-Oct-13 06:30:04

I recorded this programme and watched it last night. It was quite mild compared with some TV outings on this subject. The girls borrowed money from loan sharks at home to get to the UK illegally to do sex work because of the amount it can pay and because of the purchasing power of western money in places such as China. They worked in grubby suburban accommodation, with a psychotic madam, had some customers and were concerned about the lack of trade. The undercover reporter turned out to be a bit fragile for this sort of work and was constantly harassed by the other women to do sex work herself, probably because they, or at least the madam, would have got a percentage. We had the usual slightly embarrassing reveal/confrontation at the end, but nothing particularly surprising was reported.

I’ve seen darker stuff about sex work on TV, including underage prostitutes with male and female punters in Thailand, the Hardcore documentary with a British would-be porn star out of her depth with some aggressive pornsters in LA and a programme about drugs and sex work in Bristol. I felt strangely cheated.

We could also have done with some quality control on the production values.

WhentheRed Wed 02-Oct-13 07:01:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AnyFucker Wed 02-Oct-13 07:26:33

MsC...not explicit enough for you ? You felt "cheated" by this programme ? If you mean because there was no apparent conclusion to it, that is fair enough...but I don't think that was what you meant by "cheated" did you ?

if you are after scenes of sexual abuse on your screen, thankfully watching a channel 4 doc is the wrong the place to look

try the www, it's there in abundance with two clicks of your mouse

MsCarriage Wed 02-Oct-13 07:26:50

Distasteful. Hardly horrific.

AnyFucker Wed 02-Oct-13 07:27:47

Because you didn't "see" it, it didn't happen

ho- kay

ReviewsOffers Wed 02-Oct-13 10:07:08

Fucking hell.

First we have 'animal values' in 'Iran, for example'

then women in China deliberately choose to be prostitutes in the West and then get themselves in twenty grands worth of debt to a criminal in order to follow their dreams in the manner of a Disney Princess. Do thy have any clue how many pissing bargaining bastards (though - hey - he could be my hubby) they will have to fuck for twenty grand? But it's not that bad eh, they are probably just a bit fragile if that upsets them. I mean grubby suburbs - urgh

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 02-Oct-13 11:32:06

I am not buying this "men can be suicidal through sex starvation" one minute and then claiming to have been a 1970's feminist the next.

Words are currently failing me with regards to MsC's comment.

minnehaha Wed 02-Oct-13 21:42:04

I have worked in this industry for TWENTY years and have yet to meet an example that fits your stereotype......and then you wonder why I'm angry at your back to front attitudes?

ReviewsOffers Wed 02-Oct-13 21:45:49

Do you wonder why WE are angry minnehaha or do you think you already know?

WhentheRed Wed 02-Oct-13 22:08:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AnyFucker Wed 02-Oct-13 22:41:03

Another revealing documentary on ITV right now. The murky world of child sex tourism. It's their agency though, innit

GoshAnneGorilla Wed 02-Oct-13 23:10:08

Minniehaha - so because you've never seen it, (it being the abuse of women), therefore it doesn't exist?

Or therefore it shouldn't be allowed to impede "the sex industry" being seen as something benign and marvellous with it being great for a man to pay a woman to have sex with him?

Have you got any points to make other than to huffily call us names?

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 02:41:17

I have been viewing similar discussions on other sites. If I have understood it all correctly, the new radical feminist theory on prostitution holds that paying for sex is an act of abuse in itself, as opposed to the abuse being the poor working conditions, violent pimps and the presence of organised crime, etc. When pressed for details, the proponents say, more specifically, that it constitutes abuse by definition because the person doing the work would not want to be there doing it without these payments.

For example, on this thread a poster defined the problem thus:

To have sex on (sic) someone who isn't actively willing and wouldn’t be if they hadn't been paid for is abuse.

Given that this applies to most jobs, in fact, all jobs in which the person does not actively enjoy the work, there must be some special element in sex work to the exclusion of all other forms of work which makes it a special category to be regarded as ‘abuse’. Non-enjoyment of work cannot be the sole basis. I rarely actually want to be in my office, and the average miner would rather be doing something else than chipping or blasting at the coal face.

What is this special element? Does it come down to a subjective view of the nature of sex? There is widespread disagreement over the issue. Most men find this definition of abuse difficult to take seriously, and women disagree on the matter, some complaining that this gets them thrown out of certain feminist groups because they are not following the ‘party line’. Even women who disapprove of prostitution for other reasons draw the line at this new definition.

If opinions depend on the person’s overall view of sex itself, it is legitimate to put this forward as an objective theory?

WhentheRed Thu 03-Oct-13 03:21:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FloraFox Thu 03-Oct-13 04:21:54

Springrite if you mean "objective theory" in the sense of objectivism, I'm sure radical feminists don't give a fuck about whether it is "legitimate" to put forward their views in that way.


CaptChaos Thu 03-Oct-13 05:10:10

springrite thanks for quoting me.

Firstly, there is no need for the smug little (sic) in the quote, the phrase have sex on is a legitimate way of describing the difference between the sex that two willing partners have and the sex a punter has with a prostitute. (sic) usually denotes a spelling mistake.

Secondly, my post was about coerced consent, are you seriously conflating coerced consent where, under British law, lack of consent for the acts which follow constitute a crime with not particularly enjoying doing some photocopying? Seriously? The special element is that lack of consent within sex is a crime, it is called rape, this has nothing to do with my or any other person's view of sex. Your miner may well rather be elsewhere than down a mine shaft, but his job was freely chosen, the women in this programme have not freely chosen and are being forced to pay off debts using their bodies, can you now see the difference?

Thirdly, Most men find this definition of abuse difficult to take seriously, and women disagree on the matter...

I agree that most men find this definition of abuse difficult to take seriously , as it is men that are generally, within the scenario depicted in the TV show, the abusers. No one wants to think of themselves or their friends as abusive, so they ridicule and disparage the idea that they are. Women disagree on the matter , 'women' are not a homogeneous blob, they are capable of thinking and discussing what they like.

I have no clue what you're talking about with party lines and new radical feminist theory. I don't identify as a radical feminist, so I am ill-equipped to comment.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 05:37:10

Well, I was rather hoping that someone would fill in the detail for me. Prostitution (and porn) debates in the past tended to feature, on the one hand, people like Mary Whitehouse and Malcolm Muggeridge presenting the Biblical view and, on the other, a couple of liberals bemoaning the horrors of sexual repression.

Florafox, if that is true, it is disappointing. I hope that you are not exulting in it.

Frodosmum, 70s feminism had a very different face at that time. Many felt that the system was ‘down’ on female sexuality to the point of air-brushing it out of existence. That’s why you had feminists like Germaine Greer and Shere Hite posing naked in porno magazines such as Hustler and Screw. Today, of course, they approach the matter somewhat differently.

Grennie Thu 03-Oct-13 05:56:02

I thought Germaine Greer now said that she realises the sexual revolution was just another way to exploit women?

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 05:56:34

CC, ‘Sic’ is generally to be read as simply: ‘thus’, signifying either an error, unusual usage, etc.

Your second paragraph makes no sense.

“Your miner…his job was freely chosen…”

On that point: no, he is down that pit out of economic necessity, like almost everybody else in whatever dire job they are doing.

The women in this programme chose to borrow money in the full knowledge that they would have to use their initial sex work earnings to repay the debt. They created the situation. This was not a case of trafficking.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 05:59:11

"I thought Germaine Greer now said that she realises the sexual revolution was just another way to exploit women?"

She did later come to this conclusion, at least with regard to the free love/swinging, etc. aspects of it, which are much more of interest to men.

FloraFox Thu 03-Oct-13 06:06:50

Springrite what the fuck are you talking about? Exulting in what? The realisation that objectivism is utter bullshit? Not sure how that is exulting.

"The women in this programme chose to borrow money in the full knowledge that they would have to use their initial sex work earnings to repay the debt. They created the situation."

There is no evidence of that. A number of the women worked as waitresses first, indicating that they did not think they would need to become prostitutes to pay off the debt. Did they create the crippling poverty and lack of opportunity that would force a woman to leave her family and move thousands of miles to fuck disgusting creeps who pee all over the place? Your conclusion is not supported by the programme but is a result of your biases and desired outcome.

If you don't know the difference between working in an office / mine / factory / whatever and being fucked by a parade of strangers, maybe ask your mommy.

Grennie Thu 03-Oct-13 06:07:01

Spring - Where I live 95% of the women in prostitution are on class A drugs. I know many women who have in the past been prostituted. None would say it was a "free" choice. They were homeless, or coerced into it, or had suffered lots of childhood sexual abuse and so were "primed" to be abused by others.

There might be one or two "happy hookers". But the vast majority are not.

WhentheRed Thu 03-Oct-13 06:13:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 06:30:11

You can’t fix the entire world, mate, including the fact that billions live in third world poverty. She could have stayed at home and got on with it, like the other 99.999%. It was a choice in the natural meaning of the word.

Grennie, I am aware that there can be actual bodily coercion, particularly in street prostitution which is related to drug abuse. There is no argument there. Of course, society goes for the easy target – the punter, leaving the pimps and higher organised crime figures to carry on.

FloraFox Thu 03-Oct-13 06:32:43

But you can fuck 'em, eh?

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 06:35:14

You aren't seeking an education. You have a viewpoint.

Perhaps I do not have a viewpoint. As I said, the perceptions and theories on the thread are comparatively new.

Whether a gentleman will receive an education on this thread among the swear words and truly appalling sexual metaphors is another matter.

Grennie Thu 03-Oct-13 06:43:57

A gentleman!!!

Not the word I would use to describe a man who pays a woman so he can use her body.

And cutting supply i.e. prosecuting pimps, is evidence based as the most effective way to cut trafficking, prostitution, etc.

FloraFox Thu 03-Oct-13 06:50:36

I meant "fuck" in the literal sense, not the metaphorical one. Sorry if that wasn't clear.

WhentheRed Thu 03-Oct-13 06:51:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 07:51:44

I am aware of the Nordic model and the political opinion which is its central tenet.

I am sure that the organised criminals in Scandinavia are gracefully accepting defeat: ‘We at the Swedish Mafia are good sports and know when we are beaten. We see the error of our ways and will certainly accept this with quiet good humour, without trying to get around the letter or spirit of the law in any way’.

Not the word I would use to describe a man who pays a woman so he can use her body.

I do not recall saying that I required the services of prostitutes.

And cutting supply i.e. prosecuting pimps, is evidence based as the most effective way to cut trafficking, prostitution, etc.

So why are they pursuing the punters? Is it because it’s similar to the drug trade? - i.e., they succeed in getting only a few of the small and medium-sized fish, while the more important bosses remain untouched, essentially scratching the surface of the problem?

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 07:59:22

That makes a change from the usual accusations that women opposed to prostitution are opposed because they have delicate sensibilities and are clutching their pearls.

The only thing which makes such women clutch their pearls is their distaste at the thought of non-alpha males being allowed to have sex.

The Nordic model is effectively the model created by Sweden, a country which was still sterilising disabled people until 1976.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 08:08:42

You think that a man can't have an opinion without it being motivated by self-interest? Tut tut.

Beachcomber Thu 03-Oct-13 08:13:47

It isn't a 'new' radical feminist position to analyse paid for sex as abuse. It is an idea that has been part of radical feminism since the 1960s and which is the culmination of observations made by radicals over centuries. It is just relatively new that this analysis has been enshrined in law.

And the analysis is rather more complex that our gentlemen poster presents.

The radical feminist analysis (which is increasingly being adopted by countries which seek gender equality and which have good parliamentary representation of women), identifies the institution of prostitution as a barrier to gender equality and as violence against women. This analysis treats prostitution as a human rights issue and women as human. (Women as human! Radical or what?!)

If a gentlemen cannot tell the difference between systematic gendered exploitation, gendered violence, the trafficking of human beings; and, being a miner or working in an office, might I suggest that he does some 'work experience' and sells his own arse to all comers in order to locate some humanity on the issue (whilst remaining thankful that at least as a man he does not risk pregnancy and retains the protection of his male privilege).

Swedish prostitution policies are particularly innovative. They rest firmly on human rights principles such as:

Prostitution is a serious barrier to gender equality.

Prostitution is a serious problem that is harmful to the prostituted woman or child but also to society at large.

Prostitution is male violence against women, especially targeting those who are economically, racially or ethnically marginalized/oppressed.

Prostitution is incompatible with internationally accepted principles
of human rights: the dignity and worth of the human person and the equal rights of men and women.

Prostitution is a gender specific crime;the majority of victims are women and girls, although a number of young men and boys also fall victims.

Women in prostitution are not to be criminalized or subjected to administrative punishments, and have a right to live lives without being subjected to violence through the harm of prostitution.

To end prostitution, the political, social, legal and economic conditions
under which women and girls live must be ameliorated by introducing measures such as poverty reduction, sustainable development, measures that promote gender equality and counteract male violence against women and girls, as well as social programs focusing specifically on women and girls.

Eliminating the demand as the root cause of prostitution is a cornerstone of Swedish policies. Males must take responsibility for their own and other’s oppressive sexual behaviour and change it.

Prostitution and trafficking in human beings for sexual purposes are seen as issues that cannot, and should not be separated; both are harmful practices and intrinsically linked.

All forms of legal or policy measures that legalize different prostitution activities, such as brothels, or that decriminalize the perpetrators of the prostitution industry, including pimps, traffickers, brothel owners, and buyers, are threats to gender equality and the rights of women and girls to live lives free of male violence.

WhentheRed Thu 03-Oct-13 08:15:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Beachcomber Thu 03-Oct-13 08:18:46

The entitlement in your posts is palpable Springrite.

The Nordic model wasn't created by Sweden. It was created by radical feminists Catharine MacKinnon and Andrea Dworkin.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 08:22:38

Circular reason and opinion.

With regard to the practical economic matter described in '...must be ameliorated by introducing measures such as poverty reduction...' I fear that that boat has sailed. The free market will have them.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 08:25:05

The The eugenics in your posts is, or are, palpable, Beachcomer.

Beachcomber Thu 03-Oct-13 08:29:43

Oooh, subtle as a brick.

I call Godwin!

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 08:29:57

It was created by radical feminists Catharine MacKinnon and Andrea Dworkin.

Indeed, but despite appearances, neither is/was a state. I was thinking in terms of nation states.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 08:31:13

No way: Sweden was actually guilty. It was not a comparison.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 08:33:55

I call Dawkins.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 08:35:27

With regard to the previous message, I meant that Sweden actually did it and that there was no need to invoke Godders.

Grennie Thu 03-Oct-13 08:36:58

And what do you think should happen Spring?

Beachcomber Thu 03-Oct-13 08:39:56

What said the 'eugenics' is my posts was palpable?

<waves to Sweden>

<twirls at international recognition of Beach's MNing>

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 08:44:57

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Springrite Thu 03-Oct-13 08:48:46

Sorry, crossed messages.

And what do you think should happen Spring?

I am a Schopenhauerean pessimist. You do not want to know.

I have to leave now to embark upon something called ‘public transport’. The only remark I wish to make for the moment is that Beachcomber is utterly 180-degrees wrong about the male ‘entitlement’ of which she speaks. That statement, like the Gulf of Tonkin, will come back to haunt her.

BuffytheFeministFeminist Thu 03-Oct-13 09:17:35

I am rather enjoying observing the similarities between the posting styles of our various pro prostitution gentlemen.

Statements of opinion as fact, veiled insult about the physical appearance of feminist writers and assumed grammatical errors, vague reference to eighteenth century philosophers that he assumes we ladies are not erudite enough to catch.

Why not engage with the argument, gentlemen?

Beachcomber Thu 03-Oct-13 09:52:20

Yes, it's all very pompous a bit too hard for me to get my ladybrain around and all goes over my ladyhead.

Anyhoo for anyone interested in a little plain speaking on the subject of prostitution, I can highly recommend this from Catharine MacKinnon which she gives as a formidable lecture here.

ReviewsOffers Thu 03-Oct-13 10:07:16

Do the pro prostitution people deny that there are people who are not in it through choice?

If not, do they care about these people?

Grennie Thu 03-Oct-13 10:08:40

If you want to hear from real women who have been prostituted, you can hear some of their stories here.

I have known many women who have been prostituted. I would rather listen to them than the views of some "gentlemen" who don't care about the women in prostitution at all.

BuffytheFeministFeminist Thu 03-Oct-13 10:10:19

I wonder if Springrite will soon be telling us about the thousands of PhD thesis he's examined on the subject?

I know this is a digression and I apologise, but I have been wondering about that and have just worked out that an emeritus prof aged 85 with a career spanning 60 years, assuming they got their doctorate at 25 and started examining right away (which they probably wouldn't) and only reviewed one thousand theses, that would be over 16 per year, one or two a month. Does anyone know any academic that has ever regularly examined a thesis every month for their whole career? Or examined several at once? I don't.

OK, ladies and gentlemen, please do continue.

Grennie Thu 03-Oct-13 10:16:23

I am not saying this is applicable here. But I also wanted posters to know that the sex industry does pay people to spend time on the internet pushing a pro porn and pro prostitution line. Don't assume that everyone who talks about this is genuinely talking about their views.

BuffytheFeministFeminist Thu 03-Oct-13 10:33:05

They need to find people who can engage more effectively with the issues grin

ReviewsOffers Thu 03-Oct-13 13:24:44

I would really love to be convinced that everything is all doodle dandy in the sex industry.
It would be a big weight off my mind.

But it hasn't happened yet.

Maybe they need to hire a better calibre of shill?

Or is it the evidence itself that just doesn't stack up?

FloraFox Thu 03-Oct-13 16:19:43

"You think that a man can't have an opinion without it being motivated by self-interest? Tut tut."

Says the man who invokes Objectivism and Schopenhauerean (sic) pessimism.

FloraFox Thu 03-Oct-13 16:31:42

"The only thing which makes such women clutch their pearls is their distaste at the thought of non-alpha males being allowed to have sex."

Okay, now I get it. A failed PUA with slightly better googling skills than the norm. He must seem like a genius in his crowd.

WhentheRed Thu 03-Oct-13 16:44:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ReviewsOffers Thu 03-Oct-13 16:59:53

Couldn't make it up

the sky's green and grass is blue

LurcioLovesFrankie Thu 03-Oct-13 17:08:12

Whenthered - I think your summary gives a pretty good insight into the insecurities of the sort of bloke who comes trolling on here. What they don't realise of course, is that those insecurities are their problem (and sadly, the problem of the women they exploit as a result), not ours.

BelaLugosisShed Thu 03-Oct-13 17:21:40

The realities of prostitution were brought home hard last night by my DD, one of the girls in her form has been taken into care because her drug addicted, prostitute mother has been hospitalised by a "client", this poor girl is 12 years old and has a nine year old brother sad .

I'd vote for any party who would prosecute men who pay to rape for sex and put them on a publicly available register .

WhentheRed Thu 03-Oct-13 18:04:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

mathanxiety Thu 03-Oct-13 19:02:38

Frodosmum In practice, men who committed marital rape could be, and were, prosecuted for other offences, such as sexual assault, although it must be said that, in the past, the police were notoriously reluctant to get involved in ‘domestics’ of any kind. That was a different nightmare.

The old chestnut 'in practice' -- lol again. I assume you are joking here too. Men who raped women were and still are as likely to be prosecuted for rape or for any offence as they are likely to be hit by lightning.

It is exactly the same nightmare, and again, exactly the same inability on your part to understand how refusal to take allegations of rape seriously means hardly any rapes are reported, marital or otherwise. I put this in the same category of 'failure to understand' as your inability to see how empathy is meaningless unless shared in some way, and your inability to see that all humans have needs, men and women alike. If anyone has a 'need' to sell their body for 20 quid a pop then let's all do it. Or is it just men who need to be able to buy women for whatever they can get away with spending?

"'Nobody was interested in my complaints, as I was legally a wife."
The quote I used there came from Noori Al Shami, whose experiences are detailed in the article linked below, but this is a statement that any married woman anywhere could find herself making even as late as the 1990s.

Knowledge of marital rape, and this applies to those opinion polls, reflects, in part, the fact that the issue just wouldn’t cross the mind of most people. I regard this as a healthy attribute. We might have stumbled through the centuries with no legislators bothering to take responsibility for this, but it would not even occur to the normal male to force himself physically upon his wife.

I assume you have proof of this benign treatment of women you speak so glibly of, through centuries when it was legal to beat one's wife with a stick as long as it was no wider than one's thumb?

I can't understand how ignorance of one's human rights could ever be anything but a recipe for disaster.

What you are arguing is that an issue that just wouldn't cross the minds of most people and hardly ever happens warranted legislation?
Or is it that legislation was warranted only because recent blinding realisation of the fact that women are humans and as such deserve legal rights, made it necessary to acknowledge that a woman didn't cease to be a human upon marriage?

I don't know if you are aware of the issue of female children being married off to rid their family of the burden of caring for them? Here is one example of too many.

mathanxiety Thu 03-Oct-13 19:06:25

'I can't understand how ignorance of one's human rights could ever be anything but a recipe for disaster.'
And I also think you don't understand, despite your alleged feminist background, what the word 'wife' really meant.

BelaLugosisShed Thu 03-Oct-13 20:00:28

Sorry, I should have been clearer, my daughter is an adult and a High school teacher - it's one of her students I was referring to. She was in tears last night telling me about it - she's been teaching for all of 4 weeks and already has a file of 20 children from abusive backgrounds sad . This is in a "good" school too, not some inner city sinkhole.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Thu 03-Oct-13 20:25:07

I am ashamed to say that, when I was a lot younger, I did used to think there was not difference between working in a bakery and working in a brothel. Just money to use your body innit, whether that's baking bread or sucking cock?


I can't believe I was that naive (even though this was young teenage years) and I can't believe a grown, 'well-read' (PMSL) man would be so ridiculous.

Close physical contact with strangers you find repulsive...risk of STIs...rik of pregnancy...extremely high vulnerability to rape and sick maternity health and safety...risk of being robbed/not-paid...verbal abuse...painful demands...having to move often...public shame/hate/abuse...punters with bad breath/sweaty pits/cheesy knobs/shitty arseholes...lasting psychological damage...need I go on.

Just try and put yourself in their place spring and add into it that it is rarely a free choice due to drugs, trafficking, desperation, coercion and it's extricable link to organised crime and drugs.

Even 'happy hookers', while they may be perfectly happy, help support the industry and fuel male entitlement to use and objectify women thereby damaging society as a whole.

The only people it benefits are horny men and as I said earlier "FFS, just have a wank".

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Thu 03-Oct-13 20:26:34

Bela That's so sad sad Sorry for the families involved and your daughter; must be hard to see it so closely.

WhentheRed Thu 03-Oct-13 20:35:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Thu 03-Oct-13 20:44:22

Yes whentheRed so much racism and ageism as well in prostitution. If it was all legalised men wouldn't be able to specify 'young, chinese girl' like they did in the programme. This would not be popular. It would not be an equal opportunity job.

Health and Safety at work would be a challenge...risk assessment would prevent most things. And, as you say sexual harassment would need to be dropped. Sounds a great 'job', huh.

Will read the link.

WhentheRed Thu 03-Oct-13 20:50:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhentheRed Thu 03-Oct-13 21:22:28

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Grennie Thu 03-Oct-13 21:57:55

This letter to the "good punter" from a woman who had been in prostitution, is also very powerful.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Thu 03-Oct-13 22:33:37

Upthread, spring said nonchalantly: "I'm off onto public transport now" or something.

Well, I'm guessing that as he popped onto 'public transport' he would guess he had a better than average chance of getting through the day without being abused, anally raped, beaten, ripped off or pushed drugs. Which is what your average prostitute doesn't have.

Plus, in his job, he probs has the usual benefits - sick pay, legal rights, health and safety etc. So being bored in an office, or in McDonalds, really isn't the same thing as depicted in that tv show.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Thu 03-Oct-13 22:47:11

Just read the above links sad

How anyone can read them and still be pro-prostitution baffles me...yet, they will.

AnyFucker Thu 03-Oct-13 22:49:24

Because for some people, men's orgasms take precedence over everything.

GoshAnneGorilla Thu 03-Oct-13 22:56:22

Where "sex for money is just work" argument falls down immediately is when we look at who is "selling".

For some reason, it seems to be people from poor or otherwise difficult backgrounds who are more likely to enter prostitution, if it was just "work" why is it "chosen" by people with such a paucity of options?

Menwithouthemingway Fri 04-Oct-13 00:48:43

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registary Fri 04-Oct-13 00:59:33

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FloraFox Fri 04-Oct-13 02:03:19

C'mon now, who's been tampering with the Kool Aid?

WhentheRed Fri 04-Oct-13 04:14:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AnyFucker Fri 04-Oct-13 07:40:47

Posting all in bold doesn't make the words any more worthy of respect nor attention.

Grennie Fri 04-Oct-13 07:42:30

I think prostitution is abuse. I don't know anyone here. But I do know lots of women who have been in prostitution, and so have some ideas of the realities.

Is calling someone a radical feminist really an insult??

Grennie Fri 04-Oct-13 07:45:20

And if prostitution was really a job like working at McDonalds, why are there not more men having sex with other men for money? There is a demand from gay men after all.

BelaLugosisShed Fri 04-Oct-13 08:23:09

Unfortunately there are also lots of young boys/men who are abused by the men who pay for sex.
I was lucky enough to see a powerful speech given by Sheila Taylor MBE at my DD's graduation ceremony in January, she was Director of the National Working Group for Sexually Exploited Children and Young People, I would love her to dispel a few of the happy hooker myths for the idiots who come here with their pathetic arguments.
If all prostitution was a free choice, made by emotionally stable adults without abusive childhoods and with no addictions/MH problems , most people would not have such a problem with it, but as 95%+ of prostitution isn't in that category then we are failing society by not doing more to protect the vulnerable who make that "choice" ( which is really not free choice at all).

MorrisZapp Fri 04-Oct-13 09:31:26

Oh god what a sad programme. We just sat in silence after it. It's hard to know where to start, in terms of protecting young women from this shit. The thing is, the illegal nature of their citizenship meant that they wouldn't have thanked anybody for rescuing them.

What actually happens to illegals if the authorities get wind of their presence?

I've long been a fan of Nick Broomfields work, but not so much now. The guardian writer summed it up for me. He was on as much of an ego fuelled wankfest as any of the punters were, and I found it really distasteful and upsetting.

Grennie Fri 04-Oct-13 18:10:35

If you are illegal, you will be deported. This has led to women for example being trafficked for prostitution, returned to their home country, and retrafficked by their pimps.

minnehaha Fri 04-Oct-13 20:55:31

Why should I not get angry at your approach (though I believe I have called NO one nasty names on this thread).

The vast majority (99.9%) of those I have met in over twenty years have been those you categorise as 'happy hookers'.....and everyone of them would condemn the exploitation that exists in some areas.

Come up with all the argument and thesis that you care to, but prostitution will always exist in one form or another. Fighting against it WILL NOT HELP those in the worst position.

minnehaha Fri 04-Oct-13 21:06:39

Has anyone thought of what it feels like to have one's existence denied?

sinistersal Fri 04-Oct-13 21:11:54

Nobody has called anybody any nasty names on this thread, actually.

I see your argument. But other people have different experiences. And everyone condemns the bad side of things.

I argue that fighting against prostitution prevents the greatest harm. it won't prevent all of it but it has been shown to minimise the harm experienced by many many many of those involved. Where it has been legalised it encourages a flourishing parallel illegal trade. No harm reduction. what do you suggest?

You're happy, which is great, but it's not all about you.

GoshAnneGorilla Fri 04-Oct-13 22:12:43

Yes, murder has always existed too, shall we stop fighting against that too?

I think "having your existence denied" is small beer compared to the actual harms that are being done to women in the sex industry.

Grennie Fri 04-Oct-13 22:16:30

Research after research, shows that most women in prostitution want out.

CaptChaos Fri 04-Oct-13 22:54:39

minnehaha If, as you contend, The vast majority (99.9%) of those I have met in over twenty years have been those you categorise as 'happy hookers'.....and everyone of them would condemn the exploitation that exists in some areas. then surely those 99.9% would actively encourage the policing of those who are exploited within your industry. Criminalising prostitutes themselves does nothing to stop the problems, or help those who are exploited, especially women who are in the UK illegally, such as the women in the programme this thread is about. The women in this programme, as the law presently stands would have a doubly hard time extricating themselves from their predicament. If we changed our legal understanding of prostitution to a more Nordic model, whereby punters rather than prostitutes are criminalised, it's a win-win.

'Happy hookers' such as yourself and your acquaintances would no longer have to worry about being arrested and could ply your trade without a care in the world. The majority of women which research shows want out or prostitution would be able to move on without criminal records. Punters who hurt, abuse refuse to pay or whatever would be the ones who ended up being prosecuted.

I am not trying to tell you that you don't exist. I don't doubt that women you have met have told you how very jolly happy they are, abused women often do that, it's a form of self-preservation.

Has anyone thought of what it feels like to have one's existence denied?

Yes, I have. Almost everyday. Women who have been raped and unable for whatever reason to report it, women who have to pretend that all is well when they are being abused by their partner, women who were abused as children will all be able to tell you how it feels to have one's existence denied, there's really nothing special about it.

OldLadyKnowsNothing Sat 05-Oct-13 10:16:49

Prostitutes are not currently "criminalised", because working as a prostitute is not illegal. Prostitutes are currently "criminalised" if they choose to work together, for safety reasons, as each (and sometimes both) can be accused of pimping the other.

minnehaha Sat 05-Oct-13 20:50:33

@CaptChaos - Neither myself or my friends worry about being arrested as we know we are doing nothing illegal. I have in fact spoken to the police on a couple of ocassions and recieved advice from them.
Criminalising the men would lead to greater risk for us, take my word for it.

WhentheRed Sat 05-Oct-13 21:55:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GoshAnneGorilla Sun 06-Oct-13 08:36:35

All bilateral decriminalisation (prostitutes and punters) would mean is that the industry would magically regulate itself.

Essentially the industry would be operating behind closed doors with zero regulation, with all the current imbalances of power left intact. How easy would it be for those being exploited or abused to speak out? Not very.

Bilateral decrim, imo, is the epitome of the economically most privileged in an industry setting the terms to suit their own interests.

inwinoweritas Sun 06-Oct-13 11:12:13

Whenthered : I hope for your sake that it is a slip when you say “The buyers are already criminalised in prostitution”-this is not so in the UK. Apart from laws on kerb crawling and hiring someone who has been trafficked the buyers are not criminalised. If they were then you would have the Nordic model which you all seem so keen on.

Although prostitution is legal in the UK almost anything surrounding it is illegal-for instance running a brothel, soliciting living off immoral earnings-which makes it hard for prostitutes to operate legally (so for instance a brothel may where two people working together from the same premises-which would improve their safety--they don’t even have to be there at the same time).

GOSH and When: Decriminalization would help in cases of abusive brothel owners such as Mary. Decriminalization does not mean the total absence of law-so for instance in New Zealand the 2003 act has as its stated aims:

1)Safeguarding the human rights of sex workers.
2) Protecting sex workers from exploitation.
3) Promoting the welfare and occupational safety and health of sex workers.
4) Creating an environment conducive to public health.
5) Protecting children from exploitation in relation to prostitution.

To achieve this the major aspects of the act were

1) Prohibitions on use in prostitution of persons under 18 years of age:It is an offence to arrange for or to receive commercial sexual services from a person under 18. Likewise, it is an offence to receive payment for the commercial sexual services of a person under 18. Every person convicted of an offence is liable to a maximum penalty of seven years' imprisonment. It is not an offence for a person under 18 to provide commercial sexual services as they are considered to be a victim (sections 8 to 9 and 20 to 23)

2) Health and safety requirements: Operators of prostitution businesses must adopt and promote safer sex practices. Every person convicted of an offence is liable to a fine not exceeding $10,000. Sex workers and clients must also adopt safer sex practices or be liable to receive a fine not exceeding $2,000. The Act provides powers of entry to premises for the purpose of inspection for compliance with health and safety requirements (sections 24 to 29).

3) Brothel operator certification system: Every operator of a prostitution business must hold a valid operator's certificate. To be eligible for a certificate, applicants must be over the age of 18, be a citizen or permanent resident of New Zealand or Australia, and not have any disqualifying convictions. Every operator who does not hold a certificate is liable to a fine not exceeding $10,000 (sections 34 to 41).

4) Small owner-operated brothels (SOOBs):These brothels have no more than four sex workers, and each individual sex worker retains control over their earnings. SOOBs are deemed not to have operators and therefore a brothel operator's certificate is not required (section

5) .Territorial authorities (equivalent of councils in UK):These authorities can make bylaws regulating the location of brothels, and the signage and advertising associated with commercial sexual services (sections 12 to 14).

Of course the 2003 act contained many more provisions.

A convenient summary of the workings of the act was published in July 2012 as a Parliamentary Library research paper ( part of the conclusion reads “……. though key evidence indicates that the decriminalisationof prostitution has impacted favourably on various aspects of sex work for many. “

A fuller summary of the workings of the act is was made by a committee set up explicitly to look at the workings of the act (and included a nun an ex-police officer as well as sexworkers) ( 2008 Report of the Prostitution law review committee on the operation of the Prostitution reform act of 2003

This is a long report but concludes overall that decriminalization has been beneficial.

inwinoweritas Sun 06-Oct-13 11:23:58

Oh and CaptChaos you say "The majority of women which research shows want out or prostitution "-nope-not so. you are no doubt referring to Melissa Farley's research on (mainly) street prostitutes where she claims that over 90% want to leave (sometimes prohibitionists add immediately). since Farley refuses to release her questionnaire (against all the norms of academic practice) it was not possible to know how that question was put. However we do have her questionnaire from NZ and the question was put neutrally.

However research from reportable academics (unlike Farley whose starting point is that prostitution is violence against women, abusive yada yada) show that although street prostitutes did express a higher wish to eventually leave prostitution this was not the case for indoor workers who are in fact the majority of prostitutes. The research data paints a picture much closer to that on Minnehaha-you may not like it ladies but there are prostitutes who either enjoy their work or find it no more troubling than other sort of work they have done.

CaptChaos Sun 06-Oct-13 12:22:46

Oh Blimey.

Yes wino because you're a pro-punter copy and paster, the women who enjoy their work should be the only voices heard. Of course. I shall shut up now.


inwinoweritas Sun 06-Oct-13 13:12:12

No I don't expect you will shut up-you will continue to produce the uninformed drivel we have come to expect. Try engaging with the facts please

Grennie Sun 06-Oct-13 13:20:55

There is plenty of other research showing that the majority of women in prostitution want out. The only one that paints a positive picture, asked women in front of pimps if they wanted to leave prostitution - hardly the way to get a neutral answer.

Total decriminalisation has been a disaster. For example in Amsterdam where trafficking, violence, children being prostituted, all increased.

WhentheRed Sun 06-Oct-13 17:21:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

OldLadyKnowsNothing Sun 06-Oct-13 17:44:06

No-one is suggesting doing away with the street solicitation laws. confused

WhentheRed Sun 06-Oct-13 17:46:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

OldLadyKnowsNothing Sun 06-Oct-13 18:14:33

I'd like to see the end of the street scene altogether, it's the least-safe way to work. But I don't agree with the Nordic model.

WhentheRed Sun 06-Oct-13 21:11:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

inwinoweritas Mon 07-Oct-13 00:04:30

You are totally wrong about the majority wanting out-I could cite a great many papers that show that. But to give but one example look at the NZ report I cited above (Report of the Prostitution law review committee on the operation of the Prostitution reform act of 2003 ) look at section 5.4 (p 70) " Not all sex workers want to leave the sex industry......while there is a common perception that sex workers are in the industry through desperation or lack of choice most are not and some may be offended by being offered assistance to leave."

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Mon 07-Oct-13 00:24:46

Would you do sex work wino ?

WhentheRed Mon 07-Oct-13 04:14:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GoshAnneGorilla Mon 07-Oct-13 06:04:56

Also, despite it's title, the IUSW accepts pimps and brothel keepers as members.

Point 7 is especially disturbing, but one I've heard before. To me it rather baldly states that, unlike all other women on the planet, prostitutes are magic and can automatically sense an abusive man. This is ludicrous enough, but even more appalling is when it's used to belittle exited women "who obviously weren't professional enough to detect dodgy punters".

Also, you could have 99% of punters being "non-abusive", 1% can do more then enough damage. Or are we saying there's an acceptable level of abuse?

All this prevaricating, just so men can have an orgasm. Is it really worth it. As for the "right" to sell sex for money, there are plenty of other jobs and industries that have died out for various reasons as society has advanced, what makes prostitution so special that it needs to be preserved?

There can be better methods of keeping women in the sex industry safe, without going for full decriminalisation. The Merseyside Model has proven very effective:

Grennie Mon 07-Oct-13 06:59:02

90% would leave prostitution if they could (Farley et al, 1998).

74% of women cite poverty as the primary motivator for entering prostitution (Melrose 2002).

Up to 95% of women in prostitution are problematic drug users, including around 78% heroin users and rising numbers of crack cocaine addicts (Home Office 2004a).

68% of women in prostitution meet the criteria for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in the same range as torture victims and combat veterans undergoing treatment (Ramsey et al 1993).

More than half of UK women in prostitution have been raped and/or seriously sexually assaulted. At least three quarters have been physically assaulted (Home Office 2004b).

The mortality rate for women in prostitution in London suffer is 12 times the national average (Home Office 2004a).

Grennie Mon 07-Oct-13 07:28:12

If any other job in countries like the UK, led to the above facts, there would be a total outcry. Because it is women in prostitution, and because a tiny number may choose and have a fairly positive experience, the vast majority get ignored.

People who talk about prostitution as being just another job, either don't know what they are talking about, or are lying. Read the stories of women who used to be in prostitution to get an idea of the reality for most women.

inwinoweritas Mon 07-Oct-13 12:09:43

Those so called "facts" (lifted from demand change and Object or the Eaves websites) are not facts at all but barefaced lies and distortions-but I am afraid typical of those put around by prohibitionists /abolitionists both in the UK and other countries.

A good dissection of much of these claims has been done by Prof Ronald Weitzer at George Washington University who is a professor of sociology. Website here ( from his website some publications (normally behind subscription barriers) are available. I would recommend you (and others) read Weitzer R 2010 “The Mythology of Prostitution: Advocacy Research and Public Policy,” Sexuality Research and Social Policy, v.7: 15-29-which deals with many of these types of distortions and also Weitzer R 2009 "Sociology of Sex Work," Annual Review of Sociology, v. 35: 213-234.

While the above works deal with abolitionist claims in general those made by the Object etc websites (mostly about the situation in the UK) are easily disposed of. This was done at length by many respondents to Rhoda Grants consultation on the possible decriminalisation of the purchase of sex in Scotland-but now pulled from her website. If you really want-after reading the Weitzer material I can dispose of each of those claims with ease.

Grennie Mon 07-Oct-13 12:21:59

You want to dismiss research from such neutral bodies as the UK Home Office?

GoshAnneGorilla Mon 07-Oct-13 12:22:38

They way you tried to prove that prostitution in NZ is so hunky dory, despite their still being high high rates of rape?

I think you overestimate yourself.

You've also yet to answer why you are so keen to prove prostitution is so marvellous and if you would do prostitution yourself.

OldLadyKnowsNothing Mon 07-Oct-13 14:14:59

Thanks for that, WhenTheRed, I hadn't realised that was the IUSW position, though I can understand why it is.

inwinoweritas Mon 07-Oct-13 15:04:03

Here is a little exercise. Go to the website from which you downloaded all these "facts"-now follow up the citation trail. You will often find the references are missing-the reason being that the prohibitionist websites are cut and pastes of each other often forgetting to cut and paste the full references (so what is referred to by Home office 1994a or b?). If you can find the reference read it and try and find where in the work cited does the so called "fact" appear. You will more often than not find that the cited document does not say what is claimed. Believe me I have done this with these websites and followed through the citation trails-but not got the time today to pull it all apart-but I will. In the meantime read the Weitzer articles please.

ArmyOfPenguins Mon 07-Oct-13 15:28:52

"Thanks for that, WhenTheRed, I hadn't realised that was the IUSW position, though I can understand why it is."

Neither am I, seeing as the IUSW is heavily populated by pimps and punters and it's those voices that are heard.

ArmyOfPenguins Mon 07-Oct-13 15:32:55

Wino, just out of interest, do you think we'd all be better off if prostitution didn't exist or do you think it serves a useful function in society?

inwinoweritas Mon 07-Oct-13 15:42:01

Quick reply to one point "You've also yet to answer why you are so keen to prove prostitution is so marvellous and if you would do prostitution yourself"

Prostitution is not suited to everybody by any means. But for those who choose to do it, it should be decriminalised. and I say choose advisedly as in the vast majority of cases it is a choice-a constrained choice maybe but there is no evidence in the vast majority of cases (despite the bleatings of prohibitionist/abolitionists who witter on about pimps traffickers and the rest) for coercion of any kind

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 07-Oct-13 15:52:45

Did you watch the C4 program at all, inwino?

inwinoweritas Mon 07-Oct-13 17:56:57

Yes I did see it-also read the reviews and a previous Guardian article ( where the journalist wrote about her experiences)

The brothel madame was a very nasty piece of work-unfortunately illegal immigrants (smuggled, visa over-stayers or working in contravention of their visa conditions) are easy prey for exploitative employers-and not just in the sex industry ( in fact the sex industry is only minor part of the exploitation-restaurants, agriculture and other sectors also exploit illegals). However-as operation Pentameter 1& 2 showed after raiding many brothels while there are illegals working in the sex trade they do not meet the criteria of trafficked-either knowing they were entering the sex trade before they arrived or-as one of the people in the TV piece (and the article) entering it freely after doing other menial jobs in the catering industry-and regretted not doing sex work earlier as (to her) the money was good.

The brothel shown was at the bottom end (you can tell from the prices which are almost half the "going rate" of those advertising on the internet in London) of what is a very diverse industry-some conditions are exploitative but a great many are not. (see for instance Scambler G 2007 Sex Work Stigma: Opportunist Migrants in London Sociology 41: 1079 DOI: 10.1177/0038038507082316)

FloraFox Mon 07-Oct-13 18:04:18

wino do you get paid for what you do regarding prostitution?

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 07-Oct-13 18:14:10

wino, how do think legalising prostitution help the women in that film?

And do you think that illegal immigrants who work in restaurants and the like are at the risk of physical violence and rape that the prostitutes are?

sinistersal Mon 07-Oct-13 18:55:37

'the bleatings' of those who 'witter on about pimps trafficking and the rest.'

Shocking dismissal of horrendous abuse.

I dunno, wino.
It seems to me you are more concerned with the poor old punter rather than the rights of the prostitute.
Can it be true?

grimbletart Mon 07-Oct-13 19:06:32

Prostitution is not suited to everybody by any means.

Wino: what sort of people does prostitution suit do you think?

inwinoweritas Mon 07-Oct-13 23:15:17

flora: No of course I don't get paid-why must there be an assumption that anyone who does not support the prohibitionist line must be paid by the pimp punter international conspiracy-or whatever. I am concerned with issues of evidence -showing that the prohibitionist line is built on a tissue of lies distortions and misuse of evidence.

Sabrina: Hard to know how the illegals would be helped. In Australia they can get special visas provided they give evidence against their exploiters-meanwhile they can continue to work -but are frequently deported afterwards. In NZ and some Australian states (where prostitution is decriminalized or legalized prostitutes have rights, for instance there has to be safe sex, they can refuse clients and they have rights against exploitative conditions of employment. but this applies to the legal sector-whereas illegal immigrants tend to work in the unregulated sector.

And yes illegals are subject to drowning etc (as were the cockle pikers of Morecombe bay) and unsafe working pracices.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 07-Oct-13 23:27:58

I think that was a problem with the pentameter operation too - trafficked women are terrified of admitting they have been trafficked because of 1) repercussions to their families back home and 2) fears that they will be repatriated and end up back in the hands of their traffickers.

Do you still support legalisation even though there is a substantial body of evidence suggesting that in places where prostitution is legalised, demand for prostitutes increases, and also illegal trafficking increases? Hence legalisation would just put more women in the situation of the C4 film. In Nevada, things are not 'better' for women in legal brothels - check out the Louis Theroux film in a legal Nevada brothel. Look at the first woman featured's eyes as she is led off by the punter - and tell me that's her true 'choice'.

Please don't link to any more studies that are funded by the pro-prostitution lobby again - it just wastes a whole lot of time for people to read and de-bunk these studies. So far, on the Invisible Man threads all the studies you have linked to have been too flawed/biased/funded by the red light campaigners to change anyone's minds here.

So, in your own words please...

WhentheRed Mon 07-Oct-13 23:50:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhentheRed Mon 07-Oct-13 23:51:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FloraFox Tue 08-Oct-13 00:14:04

"why must there be an assumption that anyone who does not support the prohibitionist line must be paid by the pimp punter international conspiracy-or whatever"

It's not an assumption about anyone it's just that you are bizarrely invested in this issue. Your posts don't demonstrate a concern with issues of evidence, they demonstrate a fundamental failure to understand how to evaluate evidence, a high level of cherry-picking to support your viewpoint and a disregard for those women who don't fit into your idealised outlook of prostitution.

inwinoweritas Tue 08-Oct-13 10:21:42

I have not linked to a single study “funded by the pro-prostitution lobby”. The studies I linked to were either academic papers published in the peer reviewed literature and funded by the countries respective research councils (the Danish one by the Sfi-the Danish social Science Research council) those in the UK by the social science research councils, the Home office or the Police.

Those in Australia mostly by the Australian Medical Resaeach council and those in NZ by their research council or by Parlaiment as part of the evaluation of the 2003 decriminalization bill. Where is the “pro-prostitution lobby”?

Your so called ”debunking” of the NZ report is based on your failure to understand “community based participatory research” which is a well known technique in Social Sciences when studying marginalized communities (look it up on the grounds that prostitutes organisations as well as academics , outreach organizations were involved in getting access to the community-you presumably think this invalidates the entire survey.

You “debunk” an Australian survey because the cover has red umbrellas on the front (!). Why don’t you take some deep breaths and read the reports fully? Watch the Scamber video? Oh no-your mind is closed-can’t do that.

And Flora I have spent my entire professional life dealing with issues of evidence, of proof and using statistics so won’t take lessons from you who does not understand purposive sampling will not read anything she claims is unrepresentative yet then cites the “survivor” Rebecca Mott as an example of how prostitution really is.

I don’t expect I will convince any one of you-it is hard to argue someone out of a position they did not argue themselves into-because in the end your believes are based on faith-an irrational belief held despite the evidence.

Grennie Tue 08-Oct-13 10:28:30

wino - You dismissed Home Office studies I posted information from, that didn't support your point of view.

The only groups I have ever seen using red umbrellas in this field, are those funded and supported by the pro prostitution lobby.

I know women who have worked in the sex industry in Australia. They tell a very different story to the one you present. And in Nevada there have been lots of exposes about women locked up in brothels and not allowed to leave without permission of the pimp, brothels employing mentally disabled women with a mental age of a child, etc. So no, things are not hunk dory in these countries.

Grennie Tue 08-Oct-13 10:29:34

Why are you putting the word survivor in quotation marks when referring to Rebecca Mott. Don't you believe her?

Grennie Tue 08-Oct-13 10:31:34

The NZ report asked women questions while their pimps were present. Would you tell the truth about your job if a stranger asks you questions while your boss is present? No. Then why do you expect women to tell the truth when their abusive pimp is present?

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 08-Oct-13 10:41:23

From memory, the NZ report had 4 researchers - 2 of whom were prostitutes, and 1 a member of the IUSW. So forgive me, wino, if I suspect a little bit of bias there hmm

The Australian report had the red umbrella pro-prostitution symbol on it - so at a guess I would say it was pro-prostitution. Just a hunch.

So, I think on balance, I would prefer to listen to the UK Home Office figures, as Grennie posted.

Stop trying to pull the wool over our eyes by linking to these supposedly "academic" studies - they are biased. They are researched and written by people with a real vested financial interest in the legalisation of prostitution. Because they can legitimately make more dosh out of exploiting women.

Legalisation of prostitution will do nothing to make the treatment of women in the film any better - in fact, research shows it would just increase the number of them.

grimbletart Tue 08-Oct-13 11:20:30

Wino: would you be kind enough to answer the question I asked yesterday following your statement that

Prostitution is not suited to everybody by any means.

What sort of people does prostitution suit do you think?

YoniTime Tue 08-Oct-13 12:34:27

^Yes that would be interesting to hear...

FloraFox Tue 08-Oct-13 14:32:57

wino "I have spent my entire professional life dealing with issues of evidence, of proof and using statistics so won’t take lessons from you who does not understand purposive sampling will not read anything she claims is unrepresentative yet then cites the “survivor” Rebecca Mott as an example of how prostitution really is"

Based on your posts on the IM threads, I find this statement highly implausible unless your professional life has been as a pimp-lobby shill, which would then make complete sense. You never did address the issues with purposive sampling raised by Buffy (I think) in the other thread nor acknowledge the difficulties of purposive sampling techniques where the participants in a study are selected by pro-prostitution lobbyists / sex workers.

You're right that you won't convince most of us to change our views on prostitution. The fact that all you can come up with is "faith based" when your "evidence" is challenged is a testament to the shallowness of your understanding of the topic you discuss.

inwinoweritas Wed 09-Oct-13 00:22:58

flora you do talk bollocks. Purposive sampling in the cases quoted (the Danish and NZ studies) was done after a census of prostitutes which established the numbers working on the street (done by sampling on several occasions, using data from outreach organisations, and the police and using capture recapture methods to establish the number in the category of street workers).

The numbers of brothel and escort agency and private workers by using advertisements over a considerable period de-duplicating the phone numbers, establishing the addresses visiting the brothels and establishing the number of brothel workers and the numbers behind each number working in flats. That establishes the number of brothel worker, similarly for those working in flats and in escort agencies. that establishes two other categories . Male sex workers were also sampled in a similar way. That enables one to arrive at the best estimate of the scale of prostitution and the proportion in each category. Full details are given in the respective reports

It was whenthered who said purposive sampling "is the researcher choosing the sample based on who the researcher thinks would be appropriate for the survey." Well no-the categories are the type of sex work, street, brothel private which are categories established by the census. In the Danish study the researchers who questioned the sexworkers were not related to any sexwork organisation. In Nz they were-this is Community based participatory research and was felt necessary to gain the confidence of the sex workers. I don't know where Grennie gets the idea the questions were asked in front of "their pimps" it does not appear in the methods section-if she has this information she should share it..

The use of sexworkers as co-researchers with academics had no apparent influence on the results as the Danish and NZ results are pretty similar.

Grennie Wed 09-Oct-13 00:26:45

wino - what sort of people does prostitution suit?

WhentheRed Wed 09-Oct-13 00:59:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhentheRed Wed 09-Oct-13 01:01:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FloraFox Wed 09-Oct-13 01:40:14

wino oh dear, you've made a boo boo.

A census is a complete enumeration of an entire population. This is completely different from a sample, whether purposive or random. Here's a little cartoon to explain to you what the difference is:

I'm wondering if what you are calling a census is what the New Zealand government refers to as an estimation. Oh look, here they are talking about the difficulty of obtaining an accurate estimation of the numbers of workers in the sex industry:

Try word searching "census". (Hint: it's not there.)

whenthered has already commented on your NZ study extensively. I'll remind you she informed you earlier that all women who could not answer questions without an interpreter were excluded from the survey. Therefore most (if not all) of the women in prostitution in the C4 programme would have been excluded anyway.

I'm also interested in your answer to Grennie's question.

Grennie Wed 09-Oct-13 09:03:39

I wonder how much the sex industry pay shills?

grimbletart Wed 09-Oct-13 11:02:46

I think wino must be looking for something to copy and paste re what sort of people are suited to prostitution as I asked the question two days ago, repeated it yesterday and now Grennie has repeated it too.

Come on wino: you seem to be such an 'expert' on all things prostitute you must know.

BuffytheAppleBobber Wed 09-Oct-13 11:35:03

Purposive sampling is interesting, epistemologically speaking, isn't it wino? It seems terribly scientific, very positivist in its approach to what can be known. It assumes that we're objectively using an established method to find out true and valid information about a reality that exists independently of human consciousness. And that's exactly what we're doing, isn't it?

Well no, by its very nature it is subjective, socially constructed. Who decides what the purpose of the sampling strategy is? Who agrees upon the criteria by which the sample will be selected? Why, the researchers (or perhaps the funders) do. As brilliant researcher Peter Reason wrote, the problem with a positivist approach to social science is that it fails to recognise that the world upon which it stands is its own creation.

inwinoweritas Wed 09-Oct-13 15:16:37

Well a quick answer then to the answer I posted above when I said “Prostitution is not suited to everybody by any means “(post Mon 07-Oct-13 15:42:01)-a similar point has been made repeatedly by Brooke Magnanti (aka Belle de Jour) prompting a lot of response along the lines “what sort of people are suited to prostitution?”. I am sure you could also find answers on the SAAFE website. ( and coincidentally this was posted by an ex-escort on the same topic

The people who do best (that is avoid burnout) are those who start prostitution relatively late (around the mid twenties) are introduced into it by their friends (female) who are already working in the industry, have a professional attitude to their work and are in a relatively supportive environment-so for instance if they are working in a brothel where the management is supportive as are their colleagues. This is really not much different from any work place environment where colleagues are congenial and the management good (see Vanvassenbeek I 2005 Burnout Among Female Indoor SexWorkers Archives of Sexual Behavior, Vol. 34, No. 6, December 2005, pp. 627–639 DOI: 10.1007/s10508-005-7912-y)

Other personal characteristics that seem helpful is if the woman is assertive and has good negotiation skills-a disproportionate number of sex workers also have a background in the caring industry (nursing etc-and interestingly still work in the caring professions and do prostitution for extra income) which suggests those sort of skills are helpful as is an ability to listen and be empathetic (many prostitutes describe their roles as more of a therapist than as a pure sex worker). Many prostitutes describe putting on a new persona along with sexy clothes and make-up and an assumed name in the work environment. They like the acting-of being someone else and this also helps delineate their work from their home life.

An open attitude to sex is of course vital-many prostitutes seem to have been sexually active with a number of partners before entering prostitution-a high proportion cite sexual curiosity as a reason for starting in prostitution-others say things like well they had been giving it away for free why not charge for it.

All these characteristics do not make someone prostitute, many who have the above characteristics will not choose this path-but the above characteristics seem to suit the role.

SinisterSal Wed 09-Oct-13 15:23:31

And, of course, your next paper you c&p will cite that actually, despite abolitionists whinging on, 99% of prostitutes really do fit this profile.

Now shut up feminists and let me fuck'em in peace. They love it.

Any other views wino? Good a good apple cake recipe? Enjoying the new series of Homeland? Happy with your kids school? MIL getting on your nerves?
Never see you round the site. How strange.

coldwinter Wed 09-Oct-13 15:27:43

Belle Du Jour says herself that the whole time she was in the sex industry, she never met another woman being prostituted. She worked alone. So forgive me if I don't think she has a clue what she is talking about.

inwinoweritas Wed 09-Oct-13 15:34:05

What a laod of post-modern crap-do you really think there is no external reality or is it all socially constructed? Is gravity a social contruct? Get real

SinisterSal Wed 09-Oct-13 15:37:26

No need to be rude just because you can't understand. Gravity has nothing to do with this topic - you are just confused. No shame in it

BuffytheAppleBobber Wed 09-Oct-13 15:37:41

Get reading, wino, what a lazy dismissal.

YoniTime Wed 09-Oct-13 15:48:12

others say things like well they had been giving it away for free why not charge for it
I heard that a few times - from survivors of childhood sexual abuse and rapesad How callous to include that as a good reason.

So the sex industry pay shills Grennie? I'm not surprised...

FloraFox Wed 09-Oct-13 16:24:10

Couldn't find a pimp-lobby c&p answer to Buffy's question wino? It's amazing how short and ahem to the point your answers are when they are the product of your own "thinking".

An all new low, intellectually, though. It may surprise you to know that gravity is not studied by pro-gravity lobbyists selecting study participants and asking them how gravity affects them.

I suppose if you view women in prostitution as interchangeable fuck units, it must be difficult to get your head around the problems with your "evidence".

WhentheRed Wed 09-Oct-13 18:25:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

minnehaha Wed 09-Oct-13 20:34:44

Quite honestly I don't give a 4X for academic studies or statistics - I make my view from what I've experienced (and that does NOT exclude the women depicted in the programme).
Criminalise the punter and what will happen? The one thing it will not do is deter those who cause the most damage. Make it illegal and all you will do is dry up the income source from those very 'naice' men all us happy hookers entertain. It will NOT restrain those who do not give a 4X about the laws of our land.......whether those laws relate to prostitution, rape, GBH, theft or any other crime you care to name.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Wed 09-Oct-13 21:02:54

Ok minnie and Wino , you do acknowledge there are some women suffering in the industry...what would you do to help them but leave the happy hookers be?

WhentheRed Wed 09-Oct-13 22:00:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

OldLadyKnowsNothing Thu 10-Oct-13 00:50:22

Another couple of points; on the same basis as "punters are criminalised", so are street-working prostitutes, under our current laws. This leaves the most vulnerable women unprotected, and unable to protect themselves. (Compare 7 dead women in Glasgow, a "zero tolerance" zone, with no dead women in Edinburgh, when it experimented with RLD and licensed brothels)

And yes, brothel-working is by far the safest way to perform sexwork, as agreed by the UN, which advocates decriminalisation. Most punters are naice men but if you get one who isn't, it's A Good Thing to have Other People around, y'know?

When you look at the WA stats that say 2 women (you know, Real Women, not whores) a week are murdered by their supposed loved-one, whoring looks positively safe.

WhentheRed Thu 10-Oct-13 01:52:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhentheRed Thu 10-Oct-13 02:59:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

inwinoweritas Thu 10-Oct-13 08:39:10

This is a bit late but let’s deal with your posts (07-Oct-13 06:59:02) where you post the so called “facts” about prostitution (copy and pasted uncritically from a prohibitionist website).

Did you get around to looking at the Weitzer articles? No? Well he shows that those of the abolitionist/prohibitionist bent misuse information about prostitution to bolster their case. What they do is take the worst example from street prostitution and generalize toall prostitution. Street prostitutes (who are a minority of prostitutes (10-20% on most reckonings-most prostitutes work indoors) and are especially disadvantaged and vulnerable.

It is simply dishonest to take their experience and project it on to prostitution as a whole-as that suits the prohibitionist purpose.

Lets deal with some of your “facts”-that on rape I dealt with that briefly on the “invisible man thread-post of 21 Aug20:05:17 which shows how “Home office 2004b” is an inadequate citation

What is the claim?
More than half of women in prostitution in the UK have been raped and/or seriously assaulted and at least 75% have been physically assaulted at the hands of pimps and punters This “fact” appears to have been lifted from (Demand change

What source is given for this claim?
The source cited is (Home office (2004) Solutions and Strategies: Drug Problems and Street Sex Markets). The document is a secondary source in turn quoting other research which appears on p20 section 3.4.8. These particular statistics appear to come from Hester & Westmarland (2004) Tackling Street Prostitution: Towards a Holistic Approach. Home Office Research Study No. 279. London: Home Office.p82

Hester & Westmarland (2004) reported that three-quarters of 125 women experienced physical violence, mostly from clients or from ‘boyfriend’/’pimp’.Over half of the women had been forced to have sex against their will or without payment or been indecently assaulted, and over two-thirds had experienced verbal abuse.

What is the truth?
While this paragraph accurately summarizes the results from the Hester and Westmarland 2004 paper (which deals with street prostitutes) what goes unmentioned is their (H&W) description of other studies which show lower rates of rape and assault (p82) in street prostitution (43% & 36% both small sample sizes) and that (p81) “Barnard and Hart, (2000) (Barnard, M. A., Hurt, G., Benson, C. & Church, S. (2002) Client violence against prostitutes working from street and off-street locations: A three-city comparison, Swindon: ESRC Violence Research Programme)found that it was the location of prostitution, whether indoors or street, rather than any other factor that was significantly associated with incidence of violence.” In that study 22% of street workers had been raped, 2% of indoor workers.

Conclusion: Thus the worst case is taken from* street* prostitution and generalized to all prostitution. It is simply a lie that “half the women in prostitution had been raped”

Lets take another of your “facts”. You say Up to 95% of women in prostitution are problematic drug users, including around 78% heroin users and rising numbers of crack cocaine addicts (Home Office 2004a).
The “Demand change” website ( says up to 95% of women in street prostitution are problematic drug users, “Object” says “Up to 95% of women in prostitution are problematic drug users”( Note the absence of the qualification of “street prostitution” and “in some areas”.)

What is the source for the claim?
The “Object” website ( cites Home Office 2004a –obviously a cut and paste statistic source which it fails to reference any more fully. The data may come from Home office (2004) Solutions and Strategies: Drug Problems and Street Sex Markets (that is the source referenced by “Demand change”) which presents a summary Table 3.4.1 of a number of sources-again they pick the worst example of several and present it as typical.

Conclusion: so yet again the worst case from street prostitution is taken and generalized to all prostitution.

So can you see now what is wrong with those facts? I could continue down your list if you want showing all the facts are wrong-but that’s enough for now

inwinoweritas Thu 10-Oct-13 09:05:46


So, the key requirement of sex in prostitution is the gratification of the buyer. The gratification of the seller is excluded

is that not true of many commercial transactions? I am sure that I get more gratification in a restaurant than those who serve and prepare the food do in performing those tasks. What they get is the gratification of being paid for it. Is that not the exchange in prostitution?

inwinoweritas Thu 10-Oct-13 09:14:21

YoniTime post Wed 09-Oct-13 15:48:12

the "giving it away" is a direct quote from a sexworker-not my quote

And the idea that the international pimp/punter multinational conspiracy pays for anit-prohibitionists to post is ludicrous. I do it to expose prohibitionist lies and distortions-as I said on the IM post I find it interesting there are so many cases (GM foods, vaccines, evolution) where there are passionate arguments advanced but with a fundamental disregard to the scientific facts of the case.

coldwinter Thu 10-Oct-13 09:26:06

A report in the British Medical Journal about client violence towards women in prostitution stated that of the 125 women in indoor prostitution contacted, 48% had experienced client violence. The types of violence experienced included: being slapped, punched, or kicked; robbery; attempted robbery; beaten; threatened with weapon; held against will; attempted rape; strangulation; kidnapped; attempted kidnap; forced to give client oral sex; vaginal rape and anal rape. [Violence by clients towards female prostitutes in different work settings: questionnaire survey, Stephanie Church et al in BMJ 2001;322:524-525 (3 March)]

It is a myth that indoor prostitution is safer. You selectively quote from studies to pretend that prostitution is somehow a safe "job" like any other.

And absolutely, the industry does pay shills. I have met some of them. And I am pretty sure you are one too.

FloraFox Thu 10-Oct-13 09:30:48

wino you know fuck all about science or evidence. Your posts are a joke. We would be laughing at you but for the fact that your efforts to minimise the impact of rape, childhood and/or adult abuse, drug addiction, mental health problems, coercion and poverty on women ie people ie humans are disgusting. You are giving every impression of being a person with no humanity who is obsessed with statistics and who doesn't care if some fuck units suffer.

You are a fine specimen of the inhumanity of the pimp lobby. Have you noticed that no-one, not even the pro-prostitution posters on this site, are coming to your defence? Since you only post on this one topic, you won't realise that on MN, posters do generally come on to support someone under siege where they support their posts.

Carry on as you were. You are doing more here for the prohibitionist cause than you are for the pimps.

coldwinter Thu 10-Oct-13 09:37:36

wino - These are real women being raped, abused and treated like pieces of meat. You may not give a shit about them, but I do. My guess is that the only contact you have had with prostituted women, is as a punter.

And no woman is "suited to prostitution". Being prostituted is not about being sexually adventurous. It is about being used and abused.

coldwinter Thu 10-Oct-13 09:38:27

Shills like you are disgusting, truly disgusting.

Bunnylion Thu 10-Oct-13 10:31:29

I didn't know a lot about global laws and statistics regarding pridtitution but this tread, and the Invisible Man thread, has really educated me.

Posters like wino allow for a sounding board for many well informed and educated people to share their knowledge and interesting links to myself and other lurkers.

I now feel much more informed and able to confidently put across my views and the facts within casual debate. I'm also now a lot more likely to get involved in organised protest. Ta wino.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Thu 10-Oct-13 10:47:37

others say things like well they had been giving it away for free why not charge for it

I fail to see how this could be considered a reasonable and healthy statement by anyone. Does it not indicate a deeply damaged attitude towards sex and relationships already? And, as yoni states, is something often said by women and girls who have been sexually abused. It is no co-incidence that a disproportionate number of women who suffered sexual abuse as children end up in prostitution.

BangOn Thu 10-Oct-13 11:25:48

poor sexually starved men. women put up with loneliness & lack of sex without feeling the need to exploit anyone. But men, poor men, for them lack of sex is scientifically proven to be life-threatening - so what choice do they have, eh?

inwinoweritas Thu 10-Oct-13 12:29:16

Cold winter post Thu 10-Oct-13 09:26:06

You give the citation for the Church BMJ article but have obviously not read it-or even seen it as you are misquoting it. If you go to the paper and look at the table on p525 what you are quoting are the categories of violence from a questionnaire-for each category no where did the majority experience that category of violence. That is not to say prostitution is not risky-and street prostitution especially so-or to excuse or condone or minimise such violence as occurs.

. If you look at the actual figures of the table you will see the table is split according to whether in was street or indoor workers. You will also see that for all categories of violence indoor working is safer.

If you look at the results section (starting p 524) the authors say ^The table shows that prostitutes working outdoors
were younger, involved in prostitution at an earlier age,
reported more illegal drug use, and experienced
significantly more violence from their clients than
those working indoors^

The indoor outdoor split is confirmed by countless other studies-so I am afraid you are simply WRONG when you say It is a myth that indoor prostitution is safer

I am not claiming that prostitution is a safe job-the question is how can it be made so?

You somehow find it hard to believe that someone who challenges the prohibitionist line is not being paid. Similar accusations are made against those who are in favour of GM, who believe vaccines are safe, who think creationists are a fraud-but interestingly they can never produce the evidence. Where is it? And where is my money?

BuffytheAppleBobber Thu 10-Oct-13 12:40:54

Anyone who wants to read the BMJ article for themselves can download the pdf here

BuffytheAppleBobber Thu 10-Oct-13 12:45:21

I am not claiming that prostitution is a safe job-the question is how can it be made so?

It could be made a safe job by making it comply with employment law. That is the purpose of employment law, no? But then, prostitution would fail on sexual harassment and equality legislation, as well as health and safety. So, you might argue that it needs a special dispensation from these aspects of the law. But giving it that special dispensation is acknowledging that it is always going to be less safe than other jobs.

What a conundrum, eh.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Thu 10-Oct-13 12:45:47

Of course, el-wino could just be a punter wanting to justify his hobby, or someone that just supports the status quo: ie. who likes the structural and sexual inequality of women that supports prostitution as an apparent valid choice of career path for women hmm

BuffytheAppleBobber Thu 10-Oct-13 12:56:54

Here's an interesting (yet sadly very unlikely idea).

Why not institute a programme whereby any person working in prostitution is given total amnesty from deportation. Offered drug rehabilitation, counselling, the works. Whatever they need to leave prostitution free from fear about the consequences. Be protected from reprisals by anyone who might have coerced them into prostitution. They will be given financial and practical support to move their home, even change their identity, access training and alternative employment. Be paid a living wage.

I wonder how many people would take the opportunity? Those that remained, like Lydia would I assume, could feel happy that their choices were being respected whereas those with limited or no choice could seek an alternative in life.

It would have to be an ongoing offer, to help the people who would be trafficked and coerced into prostitution to replace those who had left. Measures would have to be taken to prevent vulnerable people from entering the profession under duress or because of a lack of other options.

Who (other than punters, pimps, conservatives, MRAs and Daily Mail readers would object?)

libertarianj Thu 10-Oct-13 13:12:51

for once Buffy i actually agree with you shock. What you propose sounds like a sensible idea and can't be called prohibitionist either.

I definitely think better regulation and support is the way forward.

inwinoweritas Thu 10-Oct-13 13:25:32

FloraFox Thu 10-Oct-13 09:30:48
Aw shucks flora-you say the sweetest things

WhentheRed Thu 10-Oct-13 14:50:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

grimbletart Thu 10-Oct-13 15:07:19

I am not claiming that prostitution is a safe job-the question is how can it be made so?

Safe prostitution can be likened to the notion of a safe cigarette. No such thing. Less harmful maybe, but safe, no. The surroundings can change, the laws can change but the nature of a person who thinks there is nothing wrong with buying a body probably can't. Respect for the individual human being being bought is lacking by the very act of buying and what you don't respect you are less likely to worry too much about whether you may be causing damage.

BuffytheAppleBobber Thu 10-Oct-13 15:17:46

Yes, exactly. And after I posted my "solution" I realised that there would still be punters who would want to buy women to hurt them. What would they do? Would they try and see the Happy Hookers, like minnehaha, who remained in the business?

Getting the women out doesn't solve the problem that there are men who commit these crimes against them.

I'm interested to know what you think of this idea in principle minnehaha. Even though we all know it's impractical as things stand.

inwinoweritas Thu 10-Oct-13 15:19:20

It is not a legal requirement that the person being served is gratified (in the sense of feeling satisfied) at all-they might have a crap experience. Where your confusion arises is from the attempt to define prostitution - is not the legal purpose-you are misreading it

We differ-I think prostitutes sell a service-that is their job

WhentheRed Thu 10-Oct-13 16:01:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Thu 10-Oct-13 16:01:46

Doing a great job making pro-prostitution supporters look selfish, disgusting, pompous and ill-informed, Wino

Do keep going smile

minnehaha Fri 11-Oct-13 21:15:57

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

WhentheRed Fri 11-Oct-13 21:33:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Fri 11-Oct-13 22:38:07

minnie confused I asked for your input on what you would like to see changed or if you think everything is really hunkydory as it is.

All you do is come on and shout that we are all wrong, wrong, wrong hmm

inwinoweritas Mon 14-Oct-13 16:04:18

Whenthe red
You are wrong again (Thu 10-Oct-13 14:50:31) when you say ^ I don't know if there are any commercial transactions that include the gratification of the buyer as a *legal purpose and requirement*^ about the NZ prostitution reform act.

What you are quoting from is from section 4 0f the act “interpretation” (see . It is very common in Acts of parliament to define the terms used in the act-so this is the definition-as I said . The purpose of the act is outlined in section 3
•The purpose of this Act is to decriminalise prostitution (while not endorsing or morally sanctioning prostitution or its use) and to create a framework that—
•(a) safeguards the human rights of sex workers and protects them from exploitation:
•(b) promotes the welfare and occupational health and safety of sex workers:
•(c) is conducive to public health:
•(d) prohibits the use in prostitution of persons under 18 years of age:
•(e) implements certain other related reforms.
You are deliberately trying to misinterpret the definition of prostitution as the purpose-that is solely for the gratification of the client. We all know that prostitution is the exchange of sex for money.

Very sensibly the act contains provisions for its review (see Part 4 of the act) para 42 which set up the eleven member Prostitution law review committee-setting out its terms of reference and section 42 the composition of this committee.
• The Prostitution Law Review Committee must consist of 11 members appointed by the Minister of Justice.
(2) The Minister of Justice must appoint—
•(a) 2 persons nominated by the Minister of Justice; and
•(b) 1 person nominated by the Minister of Women's Affairs after consultation with the Minister of Youth Affairs; and
•(c) 1 person nominated by the Minister of Health; and
•(d) 1 person nominated by the Minister of Police; and
•(e) 2 persons nominated by the Minister of Commerce to represent operators of businesses of prostitution; and
•(f) 1 person nominated by the Minister of Local Government; and
•(g) 3 persons nominated by the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective (or, if there is no New Zealand Prostitutes Collective, by any other body that the Minister of Justice considers represents the interests of sex workers).

The committee members (after nomination) were:
Paul Fitzharris O.N.Z.M. – nominated by the Minister of Police (Chairperson)

Paul Fitzharris retired from the NZ Police in 2001 as an Assistant Commissioner. During the latter part of his career he was Acting Deputy Commissioner. He has been a member of the Legal Aid Review
Panel, and conducted a number of reviews for government agencies in respect of emergency management, search and rescue and a review of the Cook Islands Police. He is a board member of Orana Wildlife Park, Christchurch. He is currently the Acting Chair of Land Transport New Zealand and Patron of New Zealand Neighbourhood Support.

Catherine Hannan – nominated by the Minister of Justice
Catherine Hannan, DOLC, is a Sister of Compassion. She has a background in education,development and the social sciences and is currently on the team at the
Suzanne Aubert CompassionCentre, popularly known as the Wellington Soup Kitchen. Sister Catherine is Chair of the Board of
Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand, an agency for development, justice and peace. Her particular interest is human rights.

Debbie Baker – nominated by the Minister of Justice
Debbie Baker is the manager of Streetreach, a confidential support service for those involved in prostitution. She has a wide knowledge of the sex industry through working with those in the industry
both in England and in New Zealand. Streetreach has been in operation in New Zealand since 2000 and is an initiative of The Life Centre Trust, a charitable trust based in Auckland that exists to make
life better for those in the community. Ms Baker joined the Committee in June 2007, filling a vacancy held since May 2006.

Matt Soeberg – nominated by the Minister of Health
Matt Soeberg has a strong background in public health policy. He is currently a PhD candidate at the Health Inequalities Research Programme, Wellington School of Medicine and Health Sciences,
examining ethnic and socioeconomic trends in cancer survival rates. He is also a senior analyst at the Cancer Control Council of New Zealand. He has worked for the Special Programme on Environment
and Health, World Health Organisation Regional Office for Europe. Mr Soeberg has also worked at the Auckland Regional Public Health Service, the New Zealand AIDS Foundation and the Ministry of Health. His interests are in social epidemiology, public health policy and law, health inequalities and health impact assessment.

Sue Piper – nominated by the Minister of Local Government
Sue Piper was a Wellington City councillor for nine years and a member of Local Government NewZealand's National Council for three years. In 1995, she was a member of the NGO Co-ordinating 36
group preparing New Zealand's NGO presentation at the 1995 Conference on Women. Ms Piper is currently the Executive Director of the Wellington Region Foundation. She is also the Chair of the
Local Government Commission and a board member for Quotable Value.

Karen Ritchie – nominated by the Minister of Commerce
Karen Ritchie has been working for the NZ Aids Foundation for the past four years. Her experience in the sex industry spans many years as a tax paying worker and small business owner. In May 2006,
Ms Ritchie spoke at the Harm Reduction Conference in Vancouver about her personal experience of criminalisation and decriminalisation whilst in the industry. She is the founder of the Cartier Bereavement Charitable Trust in Auckland, which assists with funeral costs for those who have
passed on from an HIV/AIDS related illness.

Mary Brennan – nominated by the Minister of Commerce
Mary Brennan has over 20 years experience in people management, including ten years in restaurant management in both New Zealand and the UK. For the past ten years Ms Brennan has managed
brothels. She has developed and written a user friendly job description and interview booklet for sex workers. Her main areas of interest are training, communication and human rights. Ms Brennan now
works as a private sexuality consultant.

Sue Crengle – nominated by the Minister of Women's Affairs
Dr Sue Crengle has a Bachelor of Human Biology, Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery,and Master of Public Health from Auckland University. She has medical specialty qualifications in
General Practice and in Public Health Medicine. Dr Crengle has previously worked as a Medical Officer Special Scale in Auckland Sexual Health Services. She is currently employed as a Senior
Lecturer in Te Kupenga Hauora Māori, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Auckland. She is also the Director of Tōmaiora Māori Health Research Centre.

Catherine Healy – nominated by the New Zealand Prostitutes' CollectiveCatherine Healy B.A., Dip Tch. is National Co-ordinator of the New Zealand Prostitutes' Collective. She has sat on a wide range of expert committees, and is frequently sought by national and
international groups for advice on issues affecting sex workers.

Lisa Waimarie – nominated by the New Zealand Prostitutes' Collective
Lisa Waimarie has worked for the New Zealand Prostitutes' Collective for 10 years, initially joining theorganisation as a volunteer, and then becoming the Regional Coordinator of the group's Dunedin
branch. She has also been the Coordinator for a local HIV/AIDS support group. Both of these organisations are part of a larger collective called the Working Together Group, a collective of Dunedin HIV/AIDS education, prevention and support groups that work together to organise annual events aimed at promoting community awareness of this issue. Ms Waimarie was the Event Coordinator for the Working Together Group for seven years.

Jan Jordan – nominated by the New Zealand Prostitutes' Collective
37 Dr Jan Jordan is currently Senior Lecturer in the Institute of Criminology, Victoria University of Wellington. She became interested in researching prostitution over 20 years ago while studying
women's involvement in crime in nineteenth century New Zealand. Dr Jordan later compiled a book of interviews with women working in the contemporary sex industry (Working Girls, Penguin Books,
1991). Since then she has conducted a small research project with the clients of sex workers and compiled a literature review on the New Zealand sex industry for the Ministry of Justice (2005).

Former Committee Members
The position currently filled by Debbie Baker was previously occupied by Alan Bell, the then Director
of ECPAT NZ Inc, and prior to that by Susan Martin of ECPAT who sadly died soon after resigning in

I go through all this as you seem to believe that there was no proper evaluation of the act and that it was all pimp-punter propaganda and biased.

The Committee reported in 2008 and their report may be viewed here ( .

One of the statutory requirements was to assess the numbers of sexworkers when at the commencement of the act as well as the efct of the act on numbers (since there were fears that decriminalization might lead to an explosion in the number of sexworkers (those fears turned out to be unfounded). The law review committee commissioned other research to inform its deliberations

(a) The impact of the prostitution Reform act on the Health and Safety of sex workers commissioned from the Department of Public Health and General Practice, University of Otago, Christchurch (which can be seen here (

(b) Key informant interviews with NGOs brothel operators and community groups and a literature review of overseas models of prostitution law reform commissioned from the Crime and justice Research centre of Victoria University which can be seen here (

(c) Gathering of information from government agencies and local authorities by the Ministry of Justice

You try to rubbish all this by claiming it is all biased-are you seriously saying that the wool has been pulled over the eyes of a catholic nun, an ex-Assistant commissioner of police and the rest by the NZCP?

Why do I keep “banging on” about the situation in NZ (and also Australia) and Denmark. The reason is that in these countries that serious attempts have been made to assess the shape and form of prostitution in a rigorous way. In NZ almost one third of the estimated prostitutes in that country provided answers to questionnaires and a number were interviewed which enabled both quantitative qualitative information to be gleaned.

Why is this important? This then enables one to know (for instance) whether (as is claimed by Glennie Fri 04-Oct-13 22:16:30) 90% of prostitutes want out (the answer is while some do especially street prostitutes many don’t) whether Grennies claims that (Thu 03-Oct-13 06:07:01)^ Where I live 95% of the women in prostitution are on class A drugs.^-this is only approximately true for street workers or if they were coerced (the majority are not) or whether ^ There might be one or two "happy hookers". But the vast majority are not^(not so-the majority as Minnehaha says fall between the extremes-with a weighting towards the happy end). The results are similar from Australia and from Denmark.

Once you have the facts then a proper debate can begin.

coldwinter Mon 14-Oct-13 16:21:35

You rubbished the Home Office statistics upthread. And there is lots of evidence to show Australia and NZ are not full of happy hookers. The majority are there because they have no other choice.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Mon 14-Oct-13 17:18:22

Are you capable of sympathy or empathy wino ?

Fuck the stats for a minute. Even if they are to be trusted and are what you interpret them to be, they still paint a pretty bleak picture...FYI any rape/abuse/drug dependency/violence is too much.

Why is it so important to you to present prostitution as a positive thing? There are many reasons I think it is a negative thing and would like to see men choose to stop buying bodies (which have been stated upthread).

So Wino why are you here, tirelessly defending it endlessly c and ping ?

inwinoweritas Mon 14-Oct-13 17:30:48


Not so-I did not rubbish the Home office statistics-I merely pointed out their ultimate source and showed that prohibitionists had been misquoting and generalizing from the bleak experience of street prostitutes to encompass all prostitutes-which is dishonest.

You say there is "And there is lots of evidence to show Australia and NZ are not full of happy hookers"-there may well be evidence -perhaps you could point me in that direction? ( waits for usual CATWA stuff)

You also say "The majority are there because they have no other choice"-sorry-not so-the detailed reports show that it may be true for some for the majority that is not true.


Yes I do have sympathy-as you say " any rape/abuse/drug dependency/violence is too much" the question is how to minimize that.

And as for c and p ing-I am merely trying to show that there is evidence that the prohibitionist case-as far as it relies on so called evidence-is flawed-to do that I have to cite proper studies.

Of course you are entitled to your views-what you are not entitled to is to distort the facts

WhentheRed Mon 14-Oct-13 18:29:32

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 18:30:51

Inwino conveniently ignores the economic analysis by the London School of Economics that in countries where prostitution is legalised, human sex trafficking increases. So legalisation would be of no benefit to the women most damaged by prostitution (those who are trafficked).

The report concludes that legalisation has two effects: the scale effect leads to an expansion of the prostitution market, and thus an increase in trafficking. The substitution effect reduces demand for trafficked prostitutes in favour of those legally resident. However, their quantitative empirical analysis shows that the scale effect dominates the substitution effect - thus an overall increase in trafficked women following legalisation.

However, the report agrees with wino on one aspect - that legalisation & regulation could have a beneficial effect on those women working within the regulation. But -and it's a big but- you have to accept higher numbers of trafficked women as a consequence... Obviously, also, it should be mentioned here that studies into legalisation in Nevada, for example, have shown that women in legal brothels are not better off. Far from it, in fact.

It is also interesting to note that the LSE report makes no judgement on whether prohibition would be a good thing - it states both sides. It is just an empirical, economic analysis. It acknowledges that further study is warranted - unlike any of wino's flag-waving pro-legalisation lobbyists.

coldwinter Mon 14-Oct-13 18:43:25

The Queensland Crime and Misconduct Commission’s found that 20 per cent of that state’s legal brothels were staffed exclusively by Asian-born women.

According to a 2010 CSIRO-published report, over 54 per cent of women in prostitution in Western Sydney were born overseas. A study done in Western Australia in the same year found 29 per cent of women in prostitution were from non-English speaking countries. In Sydney’s brothels, 53 per cent of women are from Asia.

Yes legalisation means there is no trafficking <sarcasm>

WhentheRed Mon 14-Oct-13 18:53:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

coldwinter Mon 14-Oct-13 18:57:50

"Each week 60,000 Victorian men spend $7 million on prostitution, with the legalised industry turning over more than $360 million a year and drawing on some 4500 prostituted women and girls (The Age, 28 Feb, 1999). When one considers that Victoria’s population is around 3.5 million people, these figures attest to how mainstream buying the right to sexually abuse a woman has become in the state."

Is that really what we want to create?

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 19:03:24

coldwinter - no, I for one do not want to see men's entitlement to buy women's bodies for sex enshrined in law. No way.

WhentheRed Mon 14-Oct-13 19:32:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GoshAnneGorilla Mon 14-Oct-13 19:58:47

WhenTheRed - in fact Ruhama in Ireland does a lot of work to help women involved in prostitution and trafficking and is an organisation started by nuns who worked with the women on the streets.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Mon 14-Oct-13 20:09:56

I repeat wino

WHY do you want to show 'that the prohibitionist case is flawed'?

(I don't think it is, but my opinions are based on more than one ambiguous (at best) NZ study).

inwinoweritas Mon 14-Oct-13 21:13:26

You don't seem to remember your own posts. Read your post of Thu 10-Oct-13 14:50:31-you say "I don't know if there are any commercial transactions that include the gratification of the buyer as a legal purpose and requirement."
Read the act-the purpose is outlined in section 3-would you be good enough to point out where gratification is mentioned as a purpose-its not

SinisterSal Mon 14-Oct-13 21:16:02


You are out of your depth and it shows grin

inwinoweritas Mon 14-Oct-13 21:48:08

Cold-yeah I have seen that before

It appears then that the numbers produced by CATWA from Newspaper reports are almost certainly a very large exaggeration of the actual case-but that suits the political agenda of CATWA (which is to claim that legalization/decriminalization leads to an expansion of the illegal industry).

Numeracy is not CATWA’s strong point-or to be fair-it is not the strong point of the Newspapers which seem to comprise much of their “research”. For instance Mary Sullivan in Making Sex Work (2007) says p138”Recent research into Australia’s sexual behaviour found that one in six men had paid for sex, while for women the figure is negligible.

Under Victoria’s legalized prostitution regime there are approximately 3.1 million purchases of ‘sexual services’ per year-that is in an adult male population of 1.8 million. This means that in Victoria that have used women in prostitution could be as high as 1.7 sexual services per adult male each year”.^ (she cites three sources IBIS World Business Information Pty Ltd Personal Services n.e.c in Australia reports(1998-October2005) , Sexual Services in Australia (May 2006) and Parliamentary debate (assembly) of 25th May 1999 (1191-1211).)

Well let’s look at the sources; in the assembly debate 25th May 1999 there is a mention of the 60,000 figure made by Mr Hulls (Niddrie) p1194 “It is estimated (emphasis added) that 60 000 Victorian men visit brothels every week. I notice that the honourable member sitting up the back -- who shall remain nameless -- seems somewhat surprised by that number. ……It is interesting to note that some 60 000 Victorian men visit brothels every week and the industry turnover is $360 million a year. It is a substantial industry.” Then on p1201 we have Mr Haermeyer (Yan Yean) “As the honourable member for Niddrie pointed out, each week some 60 000 men visit brothels” Then on again p1205 we have in a speech by Mr Savage (Mildura) “…Each week about 60 000 Victorian men spend up to $7 million on prostitutes, with the largely legalised industry turning over about $360 million a year”. So no clue there as to source of these estimates-except that it is an estimate and before May 25th 1999-it’s pretty obvious these in turn are quotes from The Age (see below). One has to remember that debates do not represent a contribution to the evidence but represent the opinion of the speaker, which is often (and depressingly) no better informed than anyone else.

The same figures have been bandied about before, so in 2002 we find (Sullivan and Jeffreys 2002 Legalization the Australian experience Violence Against Women 2002 8: 1140) say on p1142 “Each week, 60,000 Victorian men spend $7 million on prostitution, with the legalized industry turning over more than $360 million a year and drawing on some 4,500 workers”(citing Curbing crime in the sex industry (Editorial). (1999, May 7). The Age, p. A18) and again Sullivan and Jeffreys (undated) Legalizing prostitution is not the answer: the example of Victoria Australia CATWA (

P3 “Each week 60,000 Victorian men spend $7 million on prostitution, with the legalised industry turning over more than $360 million a year and drawing on some 4500 prostituted women and girls (The Age, 28 Feb, 1999). When one considers that Victoria’s population is around 3.5 million people, these figures attest to how mainstream buying the right to sexually abuse a woman has become in the state.”

So it looks like here is an example of circular citation (sometimes cycled through Parliament in an attempt to give the citation added authenticity) and that the original source of these figures is an article in The Age from February 28th 1999. The figures are obvious guestimates-if there were 60,000 men visiting prostitutes per week then a spend of $7M per week would imply $116 per visit-which is plausible for an hour for a brothel prostitute back in 1999. And $7M per week is indeed about $360M per year and 60,000 per week would amount to approximately 3.1 million purchases of ‘sexual services’ per year. Where does the 4500 estimate for those in legal brothels come from? According to Mary Sullivan (Sullivan 2007 op cit p139 ) it seems to come from “Forbes’ more recent research found that by the end of the decade the figure had risen to near 4,500” (citing The Age December1st 1999). We have no idea how the “research” that lay behind this estimate was conducted.

So how have the numbers cited with such certainty been arrived at if it was not a proper survey? It is pretty obvious they are back of the envelope calculations, taking 4500 legal brothel sex workers (itself an estimate-probably a guestimate)-guessing the number of clients each might see a week (12-15) to arrive at 60,000 and multiplying by the average brothel fee-et voila.

However is the 60,000 plausible? The population of Victoria was in fact 4.7M in 1998 ($File/32352_30%20June%201998.pdf)The number of males aged between 20 and 70 is 1.48M so 60,000 is 4% of Victorian men using sexual services every week, if it is really true that one sixth (16%) of Australians has ever paid for sex that would imply men who had ever paid for sex use prostitutes do so about once a month-which seems improbable-so that should have given a numerate person pause for thought- that the numbers cannot be simultaneously true. (Indeed the source of the 16% had ever paid for sex also states that 1.9% had paid for sex in the past year Rissel, CE, et al 'Sex in Australia: Experiences of commercial sex in a representative sample of adults' in Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health 27(2):191-197 at p191)

The error is of course that the 4500 (even were that estimate true) are not all active every week and some only work occasionally when they need money or they need to supplement other income. (This number was probably arrived at by multiplying a guess of the number of brothels by a guess of the number of workers they employ-the error is that some women work at multiple brothels leading to double counting and an overestimate in the total).

This illustrates the problems of using calculative methods to estimate population size of sex workers or clients. (for a discussion see Willcox A et al 2009 Tackling the demand for prostitution: a rapid evidence assessment of the published research literature Research report 37 The Home office (UK) pgs2-4 where they note(p4) “estimates of the proportion of UK males who buy sex and the estimated average frequency of visits to prostitutes vary widely. The great disparity between estimates of previous prostitute use is likely to stem from the stigmatised nature of the behaviour, and the different methodologies employed in measuring it. Survey approaches generally produce markedly lower estimates of client numbers than calculations derived from the supply side. While surveys are prone to under-reporting, and perhaps also over-reporting, calculative estimates from the supply side rely on successive and compounding calculations, and hence more assumptions.”)

So in short-the numbers quoted by for the expansion or the size of the prostitution industry by CATWA are based on nothing more than newspaper reports, speculation and wishful thinking and are simply cannot be taken as reliable.

WhentheRed Mon 14-Oct-13 21:59:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 22:03:08

Wino your posts re far too long. And quite dull.

Prostitution increases following legalisation - that is an economic fact wino. LSE have no axe to grind either way (read their conclusions!) but they still find that prostitution and trafficking increase following legalisation.

FloraFox Mon 14-Oct-13 22:07:30

But, as if by magic, the problems of estimating anything about prostitution immediately disappear when the outcomes suit your viewpoint wino?

This is your most idiotic post yet but very closely tied with your last response to when where you demonstrate clearly that you haven't got a fucking clue about interpretation of legislation - added to the large bucket of things wino hasn't got a fucking clue about.

It's genuinely amazing to see you return to have your ass handed to you on a plate time and time again . Your perception of your intellectual abilities is so far off the mark it makes me wonder how you make out in real life.

FloraFox Mon 14-Oct-13 22:10:01

sabrina sorry to be pedantic. When you said "However, the report agrees with wino on one aspect - that legalisation & regulation could have a beneficial effect on those women working within the regulation." in talking about the LSE report, I think it is more accurate to say that they said that whether or not legalisation and regulation would have a beneficial effect on those women working within the regulation is outside the scope of the study. I know you know this, I just wanted it to be clear to anyone else that the study did not consider those factors.

scallopsrgreat Mon 14-Oct-13 22:16:46

Wow the Catholic Church's position is pretty stark. Not a single mention of effects on the prostituted people. The insignificance of them is palpable. I am so glad that raping a child or adolescent is considered scandalous. It must be such a relief for those having been raped.

And equally I am so relieved that pimps bear a greater burden of guilt. I am sure it keeps them awake at night hmm

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Mon 14-Oct-13 22:17:07

So you are just looking at counter surveys and saying 'seems improbable', 'the number was probably arrived at...' etc.

You think you are so righteous and mighty that you can just dismiss stuff that doesn't fit your agenda because it seems improbable?

But you won't tolerate anyone analysing your interpretation of your studies confused

You still haven't answered my question from above.

And, the points you are tying and failing to make are only a small part of the problems of prostitution.

YouMakeMeWannaLaLa Mon 14-Oct-13 22:17:32

^ To wino

SinisterSal Mon 14-Oct-13 22:22:16

I didn't read it like that scallops - I read it as a examination of the 'sin' aspect of it. Was quite clear that the sin lies with the exploiters rather than the prostituted themselves. There wasn't much to say about them in that context, the big sinners are the pimps and punters.

FloraFox Mon 14-Oct-13 22:26:09

scallops I read the bearing a greater burden of guilt part as meaning a that they have the greater sin, not that they would be feeling guilty.

coldwinter Mon 14-Oct-13 22:26:47

Why does it seem improbable that so many men in Victoria use prostitutes?

And perhaps a bit of double counting happened - the fact is:

1. You don't know that, it is a guess.
2. The amount of women being prostituted will still be incredibly high
3. A large proportion of those women were not born in Australia. Most were born in Asia. Which raises questions of trafficking, being forced into prostitution to pay off debts, and similar clear exploitation of women who have few choices.

FloraFox Mon 14-Oct-13 22:32:56

cold is he still wittering on about the NZ surveys that didn't even speak to women who could not speak English? Surely not.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 22:33:56

Flora, yes they do indeed state it is outside their remit - sorry if that wasn't clear from my post. I meant to c&p the whole conclusion (a la wino grin ) but it wouldn't let me for some reason.

The point was that they were making an empirical analysis on the effects of legalisation - not passing judgement on what the social/legal consequences should be- that was beyond their remit.

coldwinter Mon 14-Oct-13 22:36:06

Flora - Yes he is. And given the enormous proportion of women who are prostituted in Australia and are foreign born, that would have a major distorting affect on the survey. But then he doesn't care about the truth. He just wants to convince us that prostitution is just another job.

coldwinter Mon 14-Oct-13 22:36:56

Do you think shills get paid by the hour, or by the quality of their comments?

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 22:37:21

Wino just wants to justify punters - and he can only do that by endorsing the happy hooker myth - and his wonderful (!) personal view of how some women are 'suited' to prostitution. hmm

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 22:38:27

coldwinter - it can't be by the quality of his posts. It must be the length of them.

scallopsrgreat Mon 14-Oct-13 23:06:22

Flora: scallops I read the bearing a greater burden of guilt part as meaning a that they have the greater sin, not that they would be feeling guilty.

Oh yes so did I. I know they won't be feeling guilty! But it does imply that those prostituted are sinful too. Not great.

SinisterSal, not sure which bit you are referring to but having read what WhentheRed wrote again I think the whole of the first quote is about those who are prostituted (I originally thought it was about the punters)

While it is always gravely sinful to engage in prostitution, the imputability of the offense can be attenuated by destitution, blackmail, or social pressure. certainly seems to be talking about the prostituted person. I hope otherwise it is ascribing a lack of agency with regards punters that is just not true.

I just felt that there was no empathy with those prostituted. Mind you the whole talk of sin just makes my teeth itch. It is inadequate to describe child rape and it is victim blaming to describe those prostituted.

coldwinter Mon 14-Oct-13 23:06:33

Of course grin

coldwinter Mon 14-Oct-13 23:07:06

Last comment was in response to Sabrina's

SinisterSal Mon 14-Oct-13 23:11:19

I think they are talking about the prostituted themselves there. it was scathing towards the punters, satisfyingly. Their agency was certainly not denied in that extract as far as I could see.

Still though. Sin. The Catholic church has something to say on the matter.

SinisterSal Mon 14-Oct-13 23:12:20

Sabrina - don't! he's the type that might take it as a compliment grin

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 23:15:55

grin hopefully he won't.

<Won't type anymore due to guidelines>

inwinoweritas Mon 14-Oct-13 23:24:31

flora cold Sabrina-
re not being able to speak English in the NZ survey. I refer you to section 1.5.1 p25 of the Report of the prostitution law review committee on the operation of the prostitution reform act of 2003 of where it says "Participants whose English was not sufficient to understand the questions without an interpreter were excluded. However few people were excluded on this basis So in other words it does not materially affect the conclusions of the report

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 23:32:47

Yeh yeh wino. Have you not twigged that we don't hold that report to be particularly, erm, accurate yet?

inwinoweritas Mon 14-Oct-13 23:43:16

Sabrina (post Mon 14-Oct-13 22:03:08) “Prostitution increases following legalisation - that is an economic fact wino” Er-no actually. Careful surveys of the numbers in NZ pre and post decriminalization show no change in NZ. Similar results in NSW-and also the number of prostitutes in Western Australia (prostitution illegal) and in NSW (decriminalized) are the same-so whatever your economic theory says the actual results show there is no change

inwinoweritas Mon 14-Oct-13 23:44:36

Have you not twigged that we don't hold that report to be particularly, erm, accurate yet?

Oh yes-as you have not read it you feel able to make that conclusion

YoniTime Mon 14-Oct-13 23:44:51

I wish I could earn money by posting feministy things on the internets.

inwinoweritas Mon 14-Oct-13 23:47:28

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 23:50:42

Who says I haven't read it? One poster (back on the Invisible thread) said she wouldn't read it. You take that to mean none of us has?

Mind you- your posts are so mind-numbingly dull and not-to-the-point - I wouldn't blame people for not reading them.

But it's far easier for you to try to discredit individual posters on here (for not reading your links - quelle horreur!) than to actually address the many other posts on this thread that are not to do with the NZ study, eh??

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Mon 14-Oct-13 23:56:15

Oh, and just for the record - I'll trust the LSE over the NZ report on trafficking statistics, any day of the week. and so should you - as you well know.

inwinoweritas Tue 15-Oct-13 00:13:05

The LSE report is a bit of a joke-but as you don't take my word for it-try these
On the Cho paper

WhentheRed Tue 15-Oct-13 01:24:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

inwinoweritas Tue 15-Oct-13 08:37:10

Ah yes -the ad hominem attack-(play the man not the ball)-funny how this is used all the time by those who cannot or will not engage with the actual data.

The points made about the Cho paper are valid however. The Cho et al paper is trying to correlate trafficking figures vs the legal status in a whole bunch of countries-so it is vital that the figures are reliable and collected in a consistent way across counties. Unfortunately they are not (hence the Garbage in)

But maybe that is a bit too scientific-have you actually looked at the paper? (for those of you who have not seen it is is here Cho. The paper is full of impressive looking tables and correlations -which may look very scientific-but as we scientists say a picture is worth a thousand words

Take a gander at fig.1 (for those who cannot be bothered it is basically a plot of tracking vs legal status). There is a huge scatter of data points through which they have drawn a gently upsloping line (which is essentially the point they make-that there is a positive statistical correlation between trafficking figures -although as I pointed out they are Garbage) and the legal status.

When confronted with that spread of data the line could almost equally be horizontal (i.e. no correlation). In a real science paper no-one would get away presenting that as showing a correlation with that data spread in any respectable journal (and I know having edited a few) to make the claim that they have. But hey this is an economics journal so one can't expect better.

Will get around to the other points in a while but no time at the present

scallopsrgreat Tue 15-Oct-13 10:12:33

inwino can you please stop with the patronising. It is unpleasant and unnecessary. You stated upthread you wanted debate, then start debating and engaging. Little digs like "maybe that is a bit too scientific" or "winding you lot up is payment enough" are not how people debate. Nor is it "scientific" which is apparently something you hold much store in.

And some empathy with those who are prostituted wouldn't go amiss, rather than talking about them as if they were pieces of meat. They are people, women, with feelings and worries and fears and families.

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 15-Oct-13 10:19:43

It's not an ad hominem attack, wino. You're claiming neutrality - we're saying your position is not neutral. It is politically biased, and you are using reports propped up by politically biased organisations to support your point.

But the LSE paper is unbiased - and admits it's limitations. Something which your reports cannot possibly claim. People like you, and old Tim are bound to attack it - it reaches some pretty damning conclusions on the effect of legalisation on the trafficking of women.

But - as you seem to be insistent that your political bias is ok -

What really happened in NZ following decriminalisation

It's Melissa Farley grin

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Tue 15-Oct-13 10:30:04

wino, you're not winding me up either - just showing your true colours.

coldwinter Tue 15-Oct-13 10:34:41

Thank you Sabrina for that link. I hadn't read all that before. My experience is that police officers are not in favour of decriminalisation. They see the realities.

WhentheRed Tue 15-Oct-13 14:57:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GoshAnneGorilla Tue 15-Oct-13 17:22:20

One point I would like to add.

In any social justice work, it is always the people at the bottom of the pile, with the least power that we focus on as they are the people facing the most injustice.

We don't look at the most privileged in a group and say " Oh they seem fine, no further work is needed."

So this (flawed) idea that as it's only those working on the streets that have major issues (this is untrue anyway, but), we should ignore them, as the rest are "fine" is completely invalid from a social justice and feminist perspective.

FloraFox Tue 15-Oct-13 17:34:02

"The paper is full of impressive looking tables and correlations -which may look very scientific-but as we scientists say a picture is worth a thousand words"

The phrase "a picture is worth a thousand words" is used to demonstrate the value of the picture. I have never heard a scientist say that in an effort to devalue the picture or paper. A scientist would know this and not misuse the phrase in this way.

As we lawyers say, a thousand words paints a picture. In the case of your verbose posts wino it is a very dull and obfuscating picture.

FloraFox Tue 15-Oct-13 17:35:02

Gosh that is a very excellent point.

SinisterSal Tue 15-Oct-13 21:37:22

we scientists snort

inwinoweritas Wed 16-Oct-13 13:33:48

When the red
To get to your questions, 07-Oct-13 23:51:58 which was to explain what I meant when I said in NZ the prostitutes have rights against exploitation and secondly Wed 09-Oct-13 01:01:06 -how would such rights help the women exploited in the film.

The act Legalizing prostitution in NZ (the Prostitution reform act 2003 The act means that prostitution is laid out in section 3-two of the stated purposes is (a) safeguard(s) the human rights of sex workers and protects them from exploitation (b) promotes the welfare and occupational health and safety of sex workers.

The human rights are the right to engage in sex work if they choose (so that is it is not illegal see article 7)-whereas in the UK while not technically illegal everything around sex work-such as advertising, working with another person (i.e. in a brothel)) soliciting makes sex work extremely difficult-so much so that in Canada sex workers took successful action in the Ontario court saying similar laws breached their human rights (Bedford v Canada-which said such restrictions were unconstitutional, this is currently under appeal in the Canadian Supreme Court).

They also have rights not to be coerced into sex work either in general or with a client who they don’t want to have sex with (sections 16 &17) and an explicit statement that a refusal to be a sex worker will not affect any rights (like unemployment benefit section 18).
The welfare and occupational health and safety are covered in sections 8.9 &10 which specifies that safe sex must be adhered to by brothels, individual sex works and clients and that sex workers are covered by the Health and Safety in Employment act 1992 Health and Safety act.

Both the Prostitution reform Act and the Health and Safety act provide for the inspection of brothels and entry by the Police (sections 24-29 of legalization legislation) to ensure that the conditions of the act are adhered to. There are provisions in the act to prevent anyone who does not have the appropriate immigration status from working in brothels (section 19). Brothel owners or managers must hold an operators certificate (sections 34-41).

Now as with all acts the problems arise in practice. For instance we know that in this country there are illegal immigrants working in agriculture, catering and in prostitution. We know that there are many places, restaurants, factories building sites where Health and safety regulations are not properly adhered to and that the inspectorates are usually underfunded for the tasks they are set. Experience in Australia (don’t know the situation in NZ but suspect it is the same) that there are illegal brothels and workers that evade the legislation-again this is usually as the inspectorates are underfunded (and sometimes corrupt-and this applies not just to prostitution, but things like planning consents, or being paid to ignore breaches of the law). There are also good and bad brothel operators .(a recent summary of the working of the act in practice was prepared by Parliamentary Library research service in NZ in July 2012 Parliamentary Research paper

As far as the brothel in film was concerned under NZ legislation it would be illegal unless the Manager had a certificate (since we don’t know her immigration of criminal status we don’t know if she would be even eligible-let alone if she could pass the character test). Whether illegal or not it could under NZ legislation be inspected by the Police or the Health and Safety , the same would apply here-but in NZ if the brothel were legal it would be routinely inspected-here as in NZ if illegal (and in UK all brothels are illegal) it would have to be raided.

In the brothel in the film the prostitutes had no rights-in NZ they have the right to refuse clients, and refuse to be forced by the owner to engage in sex work if they don’t wish it-no such rights here. However given the illegal immigrant status of some of the sex workers in the film it would be unlikely that they would move to get their rights enforced.
So in NZ those in well run legal brothels do have rights-those in hell-holes such as depicted in the film would be outside the law in both countries.

But how would such a brothel fare in Sweden? Probably no different from here or in NZ (as it would be most likely to be illegal in all these jurisdictions). But in Sweden the clients would be open to prosecution-which would deprive the workers of their income, push the poor illegals into greater poverty –is that really the satisfactory outcome?

WhentheRed Wed 16-Oct-13 17:37:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhentheRed Wed 16-Oct-13 17:51:11

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coldwinter Wed 16-Oct-13 18:13:35

The police have publically said that this limited right of access to brothels, has made it much harder for them to tackle under children being prostituted, and trafficking.

inwinoweritas Wed 16-Oct-13 20:54:58

When the red
The whole point of the legalization is that those working in prostitution have precisely the same rights as any other employee any workplace in NZ-there is no difference in their employment rights than any other citizen of that country. It is now a legal business like any other

This is discussed at length in the Report of the Prostitution Law Review Committee on the Operation of the Prostitution Reform Act 2003 Review of Act see section 10.

In reality however there have been some problems in workers taking action to get those rights enforced-often because they don't want the publicity that might ensue in suing for those rights because of the stigma that accompanies sex work

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 16-Oct-13 21:04:36

What's the point of it then - if the prostitutes themselves won't avail themselves of their "rights"?

You won't fine that it's feminists like Melissa Farley that stigmatise prostitutes...

WhentheRed Wed 16-Oct-13 21:29:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhentheRed Wed 16-Oct-13 21:46:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

inwinoweritas Wed 16-Oct-13 22:01:03


They are contractors-just like a large number of the workforce-no difference there. It might be better if they were employees for their rights but then most are young will not stay in prostitution long and like many of the young don't wish to be tied by contracts and prefer the freedom of being able to drop in and out of work and move around.

I also suspect that they like this way of working as it means the employer does not collect the equivalent of PAYE and probably the contractors avoid tax in this way as many of the self employed do in this country

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 16-Oct-13 22:08:58

Why would you 'suspect' that wino? Do the other contractors you're referring to have intimate sex acts preformed on them? Often against their wishes? These acts that can damage them physically and mentally so much that they suffer the same degree of PTSD as those in war zones?

FloraFox Wed 16-Oct-13 22:21:17

wino twisting in the wind again. Do you have stats for any of your latest assertions? How very scientific of you to "suspect" such a complex and variable set of circumstances.

WhentheRed Wed 16-Oct-13 22:24:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

inwinoweritas Wed 16-Oct-13 22:47:16

Independent contractors do have employment rights for your information. I am glad you are at last so interested in NZ-the answers may be in the Law commission report-you can look it up as well as I can-or-if you want more information on NZ check out Taking the Crime Out of Sex Work: New Zealand Sex Workers' Fight for Decriminalisation
Gillian Abel (Editor), Lisa Fitzgerald (Editor), Catherine Healy (Editor) available from Amazon here which is a good read. I am sure you can get it from interlibrary loans-I cant be arsed to go to the University library to check it out again

however I am beginning to suspect you are not really interested-you just want to waste my time-go on find out for yourself I am making it easier for you-you can look it up as well as I.

If you want to know something about the inside workings of brothels legal and illegal you can check out brothel work on working in brothels in the State of Victoria Australia and prepared by independent academics for the department of consumer affairs. The situation in Victoria is of legalization (that is the operation of brothels is subject to special rules not applied to any other business rather than decriminalization -such as exists in NZ where prostitution is treated like any other legitimate business form a legal standpoint.

FloraFox Wed 16-Oct-13 22:54:32

"I am beginning to suspect you are not really interested-you just want to waste my time"


Oh my sides.

inwinoweritas Wed 16-Oct-13 23:06:06

More intelligent than your usual contribution

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Wed 16-Oct-13 23:08:43

I cant be arsed to go to the University library to check it out again

Oh really, why not? But you expect us to?

However I am beginning to suspect you are not really interested-you just want to waste my time-go on find out for yourself I am making it easier for you

Don't feel you need to waste your time on here anymore than you want to - MN posting isn't compulsory.

Poor love - aren't the wimmin listening to you? Oh dear. We are awful aren't we?

WhentheRed Wed 16-Oct-13 23:19:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhentheRed Wed 16-Oct-13 23:31:09

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

coldwinter Wed 16-Oct-13 23:54:58

Yes thanks Wino. I have learned a lot about prostitution in NZ that I didn't know.

inwinoweritas Thu 17-Oct-13 17:32:21

Ah yes Sabrina (wed 16th Oct )-the PTSD claim 68% of women in prostitution meet the criteria for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in the same range as torture victims and combat veterans undergoing treatment Is frequently repeated on prohibitionist websites-I was wondering when that would surface.

The claim was put forward by Melisa Farley and her co-workers from her paper (Farley M, Barkan H. Prostitution, violence, and post traumatic stress disorder Women Health 1998; 27:37–49.) here

First we should know a little about Melisa Farley-she is founder and director of Prostitution Research and Education, an organization with the avowed aim of abolishing prostitution-so she is not neutral. Farley is a campaigner and often wheeled out by those opposed to prostitution –and such was the case in Bedford v Canada a case in the Ontario superior court where three sex workers were attempting to get some of the prostitution laws overturned as they claimed (successfully as it turned out) that those laws breached their legal rights to operate as prostitutes. In her summing up Justice Susan Himel had this to say in her judgement about Farley’s evidence. see paras 353-356

[353] I found the evidence of Dr. Melissa Farley to be problematic. Although Dr. Farley has conducted a great deal of research on prostitution, her advocacy appears to have permeated her opinions. For example, Dr. Farley’s unqualified assertion in her affidavit that prostitution is inherently violent appears to contradict her own findings that prostitutes who work from indoor locations generally experience less violence. Furthermore, in her affidavit, she failed to qualify her opinion regarding the causal relationship between post-traumatic stress disorder and prostitution, namely that it could be caused by events unrelated to prostitution.

[354] Dr. Farley’s choice of language is at times inflammatory and detracts from her conclusions. For example, comments such as, “prostitution is to the community what incest is to the family,” and “just as pedophiles justify sexual assault of who use prostitutes develop elaborate cognitive schemes to justify purchase and use of women” make her opinions less persuasive.

[355] Dr. Farley stated during cross-examination Farley cross examination that some of her opinions on prostitution were formed prior to her research, including, “that prostitution is a terrible harm to women, that prostitution is abusive in its very nature, and that prostitution amounts to men paying a woman for the right to rape her.”

[356] Accordingly, for these reasons, I assign less weight to Dr. Farley’s evidence

Now rather than like you lot who will entirely dismiss research if you think you can establish that there might be a hint of “conflict of interest” (which can be as little as the cover picture on a report! ()) I prefer to look at the actual research itself-but I am far from the first person to do this (see comments of Justice Himel above).

Farley’s claim on PTSD arises from a study conducted in several countries where she interviewed mainly prostitutes working on the streets or in the more desperate circumstances . She then generalizes her results to apply to all prostitutes-she also (as Justice Himel points out) attributes the PTSD uniquely to prostitution rather than other features in the background of the sexworkers. It is extremely important if you are doing research of this nature to include a control group of those with a similar demography and experience who do not prostitute to be able to make such a claim-this was not done in this case.

Leaving aside whether one could determine PTSD solely with the aid of a questionnaire let’s look at other research in this area-most of which is behind publishers subscription barriers so I reference the abstracts but really you need to read the entire paper.

In 2001 a study (Romans SE et al) 'The mental and physical health of female sex workers: a comparative study', Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 35:1, 75 —DOI: 10.1046/j.1440-1614.2001.00857.x here concluded ^No evidence was found that sex work and increased adult psychiatric morbidity are inevitably associated, although there may be subgroups of workers with particular
problems. The illegal and stigmatized nature of sex work are likely to make usual public health strategies more difficult to apply, considerations which should give concern from a
preventive health standpoint^

In 2002 Chadakov et al 2002 Motivation and mental health of sex workers Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy, 28:305-315, 2 Doi: 10.1080/00926230290001439 here used basically the same questionnaire as Farley to interview 55 brothel workers from the former Soviet Union working as indoor prostitutes in Israel, 17% of the women showed signs of PTSD, which meet Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV; American Psychiatric Association, 1994) criteria compared to 11.8% in a U.S. primary care study. So while there was evidence of PTSD it was not as high as in the Farley study-but there was no really suitable control group.

In 2004 Venwesenbeeck Burnout Among female indoor sex workers Archives of Sexual Behavior, Vol. 34, No. 6, December 2005, pp. 627–639 ( C _ 2005) DOI: 10.1007/s10508-005-7912-y is a study of Dutch prostitutes here looking at “Burnout” and concluded “ burnout is not as much associated with sex work per se, but with sex work under certain conditions, among which stigma (notably negative social reactions) and stigma related experiences (such as role conflict, experiences with violence, and lack of a worker-supportive organizational context) are important”.(see also Vanwesenbeeck I. Another decade of social scientific work on sex work: a review of research 1990-2000 Annu Rev Sex Res. 2001;12:242-89.[[ see here]]

In 2006 a study of street prostitutes (Roxburgh A et al 2006 Posttraumatic stress disorder among female street-based sex workers in the greater Sydney area, Australia pstrategyPros lit from ULAustraliaNSWBMC Psychiatry Full text Posttraumatic stress disorder among female street-based sex workers in the greater Sydney area, Australia.mht here concluded that there were high levels of PTSD amongst street prostitutes some stemming from childhood trauma before entering prostitution. The results were not controlled for drug use or events preceding entry into prostitution.

In 2008 a study of Korean ex-prostitutes (Jung et al Symptoms of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Mental Health in Women Who Escaped Prostitution and Helping Activists in Shelters Yonsei Med J. 2008 June 30; 49(3): 372–382 doi: 10.3349/ymj.2008.49.3.372 pstrategyPros lit from ULptsdSymptoms of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Mental Health in Women Who Escaped Prostitution and Helping Activists in Shelters.mht here concluded ^ Female ex-prostitutes had significantly higher stress response, somatization, depression, fatigue, frustration, sleep, smoking and alcohol problems, and more frequent and serious PTSD symptoms than the other 2 groups.^ however one of the control groups were the activists in the shelters, so not necessarily appropriate.

In another study published in 2008 (Seib C et al 2008 The health of female sex workers from three industry sectors in Queensland, Australia Social Science & Medicine 68 (2009) 473–478 [[ here]] concludes ^ Much of the increased levels of poor mental health among illegal sex workers were associated with more negative experiences before, and subsequent to entering the sex industry. These patterns were not seen among women from the legal industry sectors. This research suggests that illegal, street-based sex workers, from whom many previous results have been derived, may show patterns of disadvantage, and health outcomes not seen in sex workers from other industry sectors.^

In 2010 RosslerW et al The mental health of female sex workers
Acta Psychiatr Scand 2010: 122: 143–152 here In a study of 193 sex workers in Zurich showed that PTSD very variable from nothing for those working privately and who are of European origin to a lot-those indoors who are non-European

A study in 2011 (Cregan et al 2013 The Effects of Age and Drug Dependency on the Emotional Exhaustion and Job Satisfaction of Adult Street workers in Australia Arch Sex Behav (2013) 42:851–861 DOI 10.1007/s10508-012-0049-x here points to drug addiction rather than prostitution itself as the major influence on psychiatric morbidity

A number of conclusions can be drawn. Firstly that the incidence of PTSD amongst sex workers reported by Farley is far higher than those reported by other researchers. A clue as to why this might be so is that Farley’s studies were based on the most disadvantaged sex workers frequently those in street work What a fuller analysis of the literature shows that levels of PTSD are more related to experience before entering sex work or drug addiction during sex work especially for those working on the street. Much of the research concludes that those prostituting indoors have levels of mental health which is similar to demographically matched control samples .

So the conclusion Farley want to take away-that prostitution iteelf is a major source of PTSD is simply not supported by the evidence

WhentheRed Thu 17-Oct-13 17:56:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

inwinoweritas Thu 17-Oct-13 18:27:26

No, Farley producing dodgy data which is uncritically lapped up and repeated by prohibitionists

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Thu 17-Oct-13 18:32:54

wino - TL:DR.

Melissa Farley et al are obviously a fecking nightmare for the pro-lobbyists. Because, she interviews real prostitutes and finds very real problems like drug addiction and childhood abuse to be over-represented among prostitutes, and -oh dear- it's true. These are real women suffering, which is a very sticky issue for the pimps, the 'sex activitists' and anyone else who wants to be left in peace to cash in on the exploitation of women. The only thing the pro-lobby can do is deny, deny deny....

SabrinaMulhollandJjones Thu 17-Oct-13 18:43:19

I wonder what % of prostitutes have to suffer severe MH issues, drug addiction, violence etc - both before entering prostitution, and in prostitution- before wino would consider that this is not something that should be legalised?

We've already established that he thinks the statistic (from his 'own' highly biased studies) that 50% of street prostitutes being raped by clients is not something that he would consider problematic, as apparently street prostitution is not representative, or something. So those particular women do not matter one jot to him.

WhentheRed Thu 17-Oct-13 19:08:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FloraFox Thu 17-Oct-13 19:20:36

It's only not supported by the evidence if you completely ignore any inconvenient groups of suffering women and disregard any number below your unspecified acceptable levels of suffering.

inwinoweritas Thu 17-Oct-13 23:25:26

Farley is promoting falsehoods with her claim that 67 percent of prostitutes suffer from PTSD , she does not qualify that by saying "street prostitutes" she is deliberately giving a false impression that it is true for all prostitutes and that PTSD is caused by the act of exchanging sex for money. The truth is the majority of prostitutes work indoors and their mental health is similar to a demographicly matched population.she is being dishonest- but that suits her agenda. This sort of dishonesty pervades all her work as I will show.

WhentheRed Thu 17-Oct-13 23:36:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

GoshAnneGorilla Thu 17-Oct-13 23:49:01

If the subject matter wasn't so grim, wino's uncovering of exactly how horrendous life is for many prostitutes while he tries to convince us that prostitution is the same as any other service industry job, would be hilarious.

FloraFox Fri 18-Oct-13 00:02:13

Your "truth" wino is only your view based on your assumptions and your dodgy research. You read and read and read and yet only see what you want to see, what a waste of time. But, somehow, I'm guessing you have plenty of it.