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Call For Policed Prostitution Zones For Cambridge

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http://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/Home/Call-to-let-prostitutes-work-in-policed-zones-01052012.htm

Call to let prostitutes work in policed zones

Alice Hutton

00123719%20-%20294x173.jpgAn expert in the fight to decriminalise prostitution has called for Cambridge to adopt a controversial style of policing which would move prostitutes away from residential areas.

Belinda Brooks-Gordon, author of The Price of Sex, helped win a Cambridge Union debate by 118 to 78 votes, speaking in support of the motion: “This House would decriminalise prostitution”.

Alongside Sara Walker, from the English Collective of Prostitutes, and Cat Stephens, an activist with the International Union of Sex Workers, the Cambridgeshire county councillor, who represents Castle, argued that regulating the sex trade could make it safer for women to work together, but current laws banning brothels force them on to the streets, where they become victims of violence.

The reader in psychology and social policy at Birkbeck University, who has a PhD in the criminology of the sex trade, told the News she would support the creation of a ‘basic tolerance zone’ away from residential areas and policed.

Dr Brooks-Gordon said the current method of stopping kerb crawlers often forces sex workers to use more remote, dangerous places.

She said: “The debate was exciting as the win could be representative of a shift in understanding.

“There is often a panic and fear about sex work, but we need to look at the evidence of what works and what doesn’t.

“The basic tolerance zone worked brilliantly in Liverpool in the 1990s as it helped deter violent men and took the violence as a hate crime.

“I would like to see if we could apply the model in Cambridge.

“We could shift the zone outside the residential areas affected, like Histon Road, so it doesn’t upset the residents and if it is properly policed it could reduce the number of violent crimes.

“In this country we have had more than 90 sex worker deaths in the last 10 years but in Utrecht, where it is decriminalised, they have only had one.

“Sex work is not going to stop so we need to work on ways to protect these women.”

Arguing against the motion was Julie Bindel, co-founder of the group Justice for Women, who said she was in favour of decriminalisation but against decriminalising brothels, pimps and human trafficking.

She spoke alongside Lisa Reynolds, of Eaves charity, who argued that violence against women was endemic in the sex trade, perpetrated by punters and brothel owners, and alongside Professor Jo Phoenix, director of the Centre for Criminal Law and Criminal Justice at Durham University.

A spokesman from Cambridgeshire police said: “We have carried out a lot of work to tackle prostitution and related issues. It was not raised as a priority by residents at a panel meeting last week.

“We would need to see any proposals in detail.”

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Much as I admire the sentiment of this argument, perhaps some of the logic used doesn't stack up. This is one of the arguments :“In this country we have had more than 90 sex worker deaths in the last 10 years but in Utrecht, where it is decriminalised, they have only had one'

What a stupid argument to use : even if you take England as being ' this country', as opposed to the United Kingdom as a whole, the figures still don't stack up : Utrecht has a population of just over 300,000, England has nearly two hundred times as many people. So, the statistic seems to prove the reverse of what she is trying to establish.

Edited by georgem

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Surely the statistical analysis would require us to know how many WGs there were in Utrecht and "this country". If everyone in Utrecht were a sex worker & only a tiny minority of people in "this country" were, the conclusion would be different.

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Statistics, statistics and damm lies!!

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Surely the statistical analysis would require us to know how many WGs there were in Utrecht and "this country". If everyone in Utrecht were a sex worker & only a tiny minority of people in "this country" were, the conclusion would be different.

yes and it is actually much more that just the statistics. It is about the country's attitude to sex and paid for sex for that matter - and then there is the small matter of criminal gangs taking over behind the scenes. It is not easy at all!

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Surely the statistical analysis would require us to know how many WGs there were in Utrecht and "this country". If everyone in Utrecht were a sex worker & only a tiny minority of people in "this country" were, the conclusion would be different.

Quite. On the ISG there have been 15 postings on the Utrecht forum since the start of 2008.

Including a first time posters question of "Do you remember approx. the boat number?" :huh:

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Much as I admire the sentiment of this argument, perhaps some of the logic used doesn't stack up. This is one of the arguments :“In this country we have had more than 90 sex worker deaths in the last 10 years but in Utrecht, where it is decriminalised, they have only had one'

What a stupid argument to use : even if you take England as being ' this country', as opposed to the United Kingdom as a whole, the figures still don't stack up : Utrecht has a population of just over 300,000, England has nearly two hundred times as many people. So, the statistic seems to prove the reverse of what she is trying to establish.

I think that must be a misquote - as you say, that would be a silly thing for her to say, but isn't it decriminalised in the whole of the Netherlands, after all? Perhaps what she was actually saying was that there was only one homicide amongst sex workers in the Netherlands, and that homicide took place in Utrecht? Is that stat true?

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I think that must be a misquote - as you say, that would be a silly thing for her to say, but isn't it decriminalised in the whole of the Netherlands, after all? Perhaps what she was actually saying was that there was only one homicide amongst sex workers in the Netherlands, and that homicide took place in Utrecht? Is that stat true?

I've a feeling you've got it right there, I'm sure I've it said about Holland as a whole.

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Perhaps what she was actually saying was that there was only one homicide amongst sex workers in the Netherlands, and that homicide took place in Utrecht? Is that stat true?

"Cold case team to look again at 60 prostitute murders.

Rotterdam police's cold case team is reopening the investigations into at least 60 unsolved murders in the 1980s and 1990s, the public prosecution department told Nos television on Friday.

The murder victims were all prostitutes and the killings took place in Rotterdam, Amsterdam and Groningen and possibly other locations."

http://www.dutchnews...ook_again_a.php

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"Cold case team to look again at 60 prostitute murders.

Rotterdam police's cold case team is reopening the investigations into at least 60 unsolved murders in the 1980s and 1990s, the public prosecution department told Nos television on Friday.

The murder victims were all prostitutes and the killings took place in Rotterdam, Amsterdam and Groningen and possibly other locations."

http://www.dutchnews...ook_again_a.php

According to wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prostitution_in_the_Netherlands) the Dutch government legalised prostitution on 1st October 2000. Before that brothels were illegal but informally tolerated, a situation which according to wikipedia, "made it difficult to set rules for the sex industry".

The murder figures cited above (at least 60 in 20 years) relate to the period BEFORE legalisation. The one murder (in Utrecht) cited by Belinda Brooks Gordon took place "in the last 10 years", presumably 2002-2012 i.e SINCE legalisation. Without a clearer examination of the sources for all these informally cited statistics, one can't draw definitive conclusions, but on the face of it one might conclude that there were 30 prostitute murders per decade in the two decades immediately BEFORE legalisation and one murder per decade in the decade 2002-2012 AFTER legalisation.

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The murder figures cited above (at least 60 in 20 years) relate to the period BEFORE legalisation.

You've got me there. I hadn't spotted that.

I've found this regarding a murder in Amsterdam in 2009:

http://www.dutchamst...e-stabbed-death

"It is the 13th time that a prostitute has been murdered in Amsterdam since 1990.

The twelfth murder took place in October, 2004, when someone cut the throat of a Thai prostitute working in the nearby Barndesteeg.

Prostitution was defined a legal profession in the Netherlands in January, 1988."

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I've found this regarding a murder in Amsterdam in 2009:

http://www.dutchamst...e-stabbed-death

"It is the 13th time that a prostitute has been murdered in Amsterdam since 1990.

The twelfth murder took place in October, 2004, when someone cut the throat of a Thai prostitute working in the nearby Barndesteeg.

Prostitution was defined a legal profession in the Netherlands in January, 1988."

OK, so it sounds like my try at un-mangling the quote was wrong. In my opinion the sensible money is still on the local rag getting things mixed up rather than Ms. Brooks Gordon saying something quite so silly. Maybe she said that the overall rate is lower, and then went on to mention Utrecht as an example. I would think she was referring to the province of Utrecht, which has a population of 1.2 million, not so different from the county of Cambridgeshire's 0.8 million. Though 1 death in that province can't be statistically significantly different from 90 deaths in the UK, perhaps there was more than 1 "sex worker death" in Cambridgeshire or some other similarly sized county in that period? Maybe neighbouring Suffolk (0.7 million), where of course at least 5 girls were murdered by one man in that period. No comparison involving single deaths is going to be significant, but though it pains me to say it, the press love that sort of thing so much it's hard to blame her for playing that game.

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