Thursday, 17 Mar 2011
Sex workers are protected by one law but can be prosecuted under another.
After a recent court ruling, sex workers now enjoy protection under the Labour Relations Act. However, they can still be prosecuted under the Sexual Offences Act for plying their trade.
The case that brought about this situation is related to a 2006 incident involving a sex worker referred to as “Kylie” who alleged that she was unfairly dismissed by the owner of the brothel where she worked.
In October last year Judge Dennis Davis of the labour appeal court , citing the constitutional right to fair labour practice, found that the council for conciliation, mediation & arbitration (CCMA) could indeed hear Kylie’s grievance, which led to an undisclosed settlement. Continue reading
September 28, 2010, By CBC News
An Ontario court has thrown out key provisions of Canada’s anti-prostitution laws in response to a constitutional challenge by a Toronto dominatrix and two prostitutes in 2009.
Ontario’s Superior Court of Justice ruled Tuesday the Criminal Code provisions relating to prostitution contribute to the danger faced by sex-trade workers.
In her ruling, Justice Susan Himel said it now falls to Parliament to “fashion corrective action.”
“It is my view that in the meantime these unconstitutional provisions should be of no force and effect, particularly given the seriousness of the charter violations,” Himel wrote. Continue reading
A sex worker in Durban’s Point Road
A South African sex worker has gone to court, saying she was unfairly sacked by a Cape Town massage parlour.
Known as Kylie, she was dismissed for choosing her clients and spending time with her boyfriend who did not pay for her services, local media report.
The judge said he was not sure how a person engaged in an illegal activity could challenge her dismissal in court.
But Kylie’s lawyer said her case was about unfair dismissal, not whether selling sex should be legalised.
Several previous courts have refused to hear the case, on the basis that sex work is illegal, reports the South African Press Association.
Three judges at the Labour Appeals Court are now considering whether they can intervene.
“When dismissed you are made to stop with something criminal… but then you say: ‘Please protect me from someone who is stopping me from doing something criminal’ – it doesn’t makes sense to me,” said Judge President Raymond Zondo, Sapa reports.
Kylie has spent seven years trying to seek redress after being sacked in 2003.
She is reported to have since left the profession.
See original at BBC