Flashback: New Zealand Parliament votes in favour of prostitution reform

Stuff co.nz 30 June 2018
Family First Comment: “The pushback continues more than a decade on, with Family First NZ recently joining what it says are “calls for a critical review of the 2003 Prostitution Reform Act, the criminalisation of the pimping and purchase of women for sexual purposes, and greater support for workers wishing to exit prostitution”.
You bet!

It might be “the world’s oldest profession” but prostitution has had a fraught history globally and in New Zealand.

But on June 25, 2003, to many people’s surprise, the Prostitution Reform Act (PRA) narrowly passed – by 60-59. One MP, Labour’s Ashraf Choudhary, the country’s only Muslim MP, abstained.

The key aims of the act, which was championed by Labour MP Tim Barnett, were to safeguard the human rights of sex workers and protect them from exploitation, and to promote their welfare and occupational health and safety.

While sex work had not been illegal before the act, the majority of activities involved in sex work were criminal offences.  The Police Offences Act 1884 made it an offence for “common prostitutes” to solicit for business in public and The Crimes Act 1961 made it illegal to keep a brothel, live off the earnings of the prostitution of another person, and procure sexual services for someone else.

The campaign was ultimately unsuccessful,  but the pushback continues more than a decade on, with Family First NZ recently joining what it says are “calls for a critical review of the 2003 Prostitution Reform Act, the criminalisation of the pimping and purchase of women for sexual purposes, and greater support for workers wishing to exit prostitution”.
READ MORE: https://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/104999995/flashback-new-zealand-parliament-votes-in-favour-of-prostitution-reform

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