BREAKING NEWS: Victory as Act passes to criminalise the purchase of sex from a person who has been exploited.
The Demand Change! Campaign is delighted to announce a major victory for women exploited by the sex industry, as Clause 14 (formerly 13) of the Policing & Crime Act was passed, putting the rights of exploited women over those of pimps and punters.
In focusing on the demand for sexual services, Clause 14 shifts criminal liability away from people exploited through prostitution and places responsibility firmly on the shoulders of those who contribute to commercial sexual exploitation by choosing to purchase girls, boys, women and men for sexual use.
This is a huge achievement for the 67 women’s and human rights organisations which supported this bill, and which campaigned tirelessly to obtain justice for the women, children and men who have for so long been exploited by the sex industry. Many of these organisations along with Demand Change! activists attended our successful mass support rally in Parliament Square just before the vote, calling on Peers to ‘Vote for Women, not Pimps and Punters!’.
A massive well done and thank you to all of you who wrote letters to MPs and Peers, who signed the joint statement of support, who protested outside the Houses of Parliament, who gave testimony and were part of or helped make the film of video testimony that was screened in the House of Commons on the eve of the debate (mentioned in the debate) and who have been working for years to raise awareness about the reality of prostitution and the need to tackle demand for commercial sexual exploitation.
Read the debate here (from page 61)
See photos of the protest here
Read press release here
Read Parliament media coverage here
This is a huge victory in the fight against commercial sexual exploitation.