Ronald Weitzer: Some lurid prostitution myths debunked

01:00 AM EDT on Friday, June 19, 2009

In the past few weeks, advocates of criminalizing prostitution in Rhode Island have made many assertions about the “horrors” of prostitution to push legislation forward. Most of these claims are myths.

Research shows that there is a world of difference between those who work the streets and those who sell sex indoors (in massage parlors, brothels, for escort agencies or as independent call girls). Indoor workers generally have lower rates of childhood abuse, enter prostitution at an older age, have more education, are less drug-dependent, are less likely to have sexually transmitted diseases and are less likely to be assaulted or raped than street workers. Indoor workers also tend to enjoy better working conditions and earn more money. Continue reading


Cambodia: The traffic police

Jun 11th 2009 | PHNOM PENH From The Economist print edition

’Tis a pity, but she won’t go away

IN EERIE, deserted silence on the outskirts of Phnom Penh sits the Prey Speu detention centre. Barely legible on its grimy walls a few weeks ago were cries for help and whispers of despair from the tormented souls once crammed into its grimy cells. “This is to mark that I lived in terror under oppression,” read one message.

It recalls a Khmer Rouge torture centre from the genocidal 1970s. But in fact the building was used just last year as a “rehabilitation” centre, where detained sex-workers, along with beggars and the homeless, learnt sewing and cooking. They were rounded up in a crackdown on trafficking for the sex industry. At first an attempt to clean up Phnom Penh, it soon escalated into a violent campaign by the police against prostitutes and those living on the street. According to Licadho, a local human-rights group, guards at the centre beat three people to death, and at least five detainees killed themselves. Sreymoa, a trafficked sex-worker, detained in May 2008 with her four-year-old daughter, recalls daily beatings, rapes and one death. Continue reading

CO: Woman says she was forced into prostitution

20-year-old told Broomfield police she was coerced to Colorado, forced into illegal acts

Enterprise staff
Originally published 05:28 p.m., June 19, 2009
Updated 04:18 p.m., June 22, 2009

BROOMFIELD, Colo. — Broomfield police this week continue investigating allegations that a 20-year-old female was being held in Colorado against her will and was forced into prostitution and exotic dancing.

Police received a call from the woman around 1:50 p.m. Friday. She said she had been coerced into coming to Colorado from another state and that her captor had forced her into the illegal and illicit activities. Continue reading

Police: Woman Forced To Become Prostitute

Investigators Say Woman Was Coerced
Posted by: Thomas Hendrick, News Editor
POSTED: 5:35 pm MDT June 19, 2009
UPDATED: 5:56 pm MDT June 19, 2009

DENVER — Broomfield police have arrested a man who they said coerced a 20-year-old woman to come to Colorado and then forced her to become a prostitute and exotic dancer.

The woman, whose name was not released, contacted police at about 2 p.m. Friday and told them she was being held against her will, said Sgt. Heidi Waltz of the Broomfield Police Department. Continue reading

Bruno opens Amsterdam “pink light” brothel

Fri Jun 19, 2009 1:22pm EDT

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – British comedian Sacha Baron Cohen, in his latest incarnation as a gay Austrian fashion reporter, jet skied through a canal into Amsterdam’s red light district on Friday to open a brothel full of men in thongs ahead of the Dutch premiere of ‘Bruno’.

“For too long, guys coming here from around the world have been forced to have sex with women,” Cohen said, standing in front of a pink-lit brothel building in the Dutch capital as surprised tourists and stag party goers looked on. Continue reading

Indian sex workers fight back with karate

by the national gadfly
Fri Jun 19, 2009 at 12:15:49 PM PDT

Sex workers in India have had enough and are fighting back – literally. The world’s oldest profession is still illegal in many countries. This leaves sex workers vulneralbe to attack from customers and police.

(Cross-posted at sexgenderbody)

the national gadfly’s diary :: ::

There is a vast difference between the lives and daily existences of voluntary sex workers and those that are forced into sex work. I choose to support the rights of consenting sex workers to make that choice. I also support the rights of the human beings trapped in sex work to a life of dignity and equality. I want people trapped in poverty to have other choices besides sex work to begin with and a way out for those seeking it. Even those inside involuntary sex work deserve health care, freedom from persecution and violence and the protection from police from the crimes committed against them. Continue reading

Choosing prostitution: Is it a choice?

June 19, 9:17 AM

According to “Sex workers testify at Senate hearing on prostitution bill”, Rhode Island, with exception of a few places in Nevada, is the only place where there is no law banning indoor sex trafficking.

In the article, some of the women testified that they are not being forced, or coerced, into prostitution. They claim that they make more than the $7 an hour job to support children and family. Continue reading