EWL News

EWL supports Open letter calling for Nordic approach to prostitution in Canada

[Canada, 23 April 2014] On 23 April 2014, an open letter calling for the Nordic model in Canada has been unveiled with its 800 signatures from NGOs and personnalities from all over the world. The open letter is part of the campaign of the Women’s Coalition for the Abolition of Prostitution, under the theme "We Want More for Women", and aiming to change the Canadian laws on prostitution.

In December 2013, the Supreme Court of Canada found portions of the criminal laws relating to prostitution unconstitutional and held that the declaration of invalidity was suspended for 12 months to give Parliament an opportunity to put new laws in place. Parliament must respond to this decision in 2014 in a manner consistent with its constitutional and international obligations to protect and promote the equality of women. In this context, some academics are calling for the decriminalisation of "sex work", which would mean, for women’s organisations, the institutionalisation of a system perpetuating inequality between women and men and violence against women.

The European Women’ Lobby supported the women’s organisations in Canada by contributing to the debate and submitting the following document to the Canadian government during the public consultation on prostitution it conducted between February 17 and March 17: Submission of the European Women’ Lobby to the Government of Canada on Prostitution-Related Offences in Canada.

The Women’s Coalition for the Abolition of Prostitution is a pancanadian, feminist and abolitionnist Coalition of seven national, provincial and local women’s groups whose members and the women they work with include prostituted women.

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