Support for Victorian Government announcement to review into the decriminalisation of sex work
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
27 November 2019 – Star Health support and welcome the Andrew’s Government announcement today that there will be a review into decriminalisation of sex work in Victoria.
Star Health supports the full decriminalisation of all forms of sex work between consenting adults in Victoria.
This position is based on research and evidence that acknowledges full decriminalisation keeps sex workers safer and has been recommended by Amnesty International, the World Health Organisation and the Lancet Medical Journal. Star Health also supports the position taken by peer only and peer led organisations Scarlet Alliance, Vixen Collective and Sex Work Law Reform Victoria.
Manager of the RhED program (Resourcing Health and Education in the Sex Industry), Leah Vincent said, “Decriminalising sex work will help save lives. We know that rape, physical assault and other crime against sex workers often goes unreported due to the fear and stigma associated in working in a criminalised industry.”
Decriminalisation has been shown in other jurisdictions to make no difference to the number of street sex workers, however, it does increase their ability to keep themselves safe via the ability to negotiate consensual services safely and report to police any assaults or violence. Sex workers’ ability to report violence also increases general community safety.
Decriminalisation of sex work would enable regulation through other occupational means such as workplace occupational health and safety and public health practices. It would remove criminal penalties and make it easier for sex workers to both report violence to police, and to access health and support services. These changes would contribute to reducing the stigma and discrimination experienced by sex workers. Decriminalisation also facilitates safer working conditions, builds a community of inclusion and acceptance and upholds sex workers’ human rights.
Oraco Agency (Star Health Partner)
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