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bottom liner

Lies, damned lies and..........

12 posts in this topic

.....statistics. This is something I know something about. Generally I'm more comfortable speaking from a position of complete ignorance, but as this is important, I'll give it a go anyway.

This industry lives in a fog of poor statistics. Of course it's hard to get a handle on the numbers when there is inherently a floating population of service providers and customers as well as the quasi-legal nature of the industry across its various segments.

Then there are the people with their various agendas who rely on the fog to enable them to quote unchallenged only the stats that support their positions, compounding inaccuracy with deliberate misrepresentation. Classic examples include the spectacular figure of 80% of all sp's trafficked, the universe of sp's set at 80k, and the Poppy Project's so-called research paper with its risible methodologies that wouldn't have garnered a pass mark if submitted as a Masters' dissertation, yet is blithely quoted by ministers as if gospel.

So what can we rely on.

Pentameter 1 and 2 are probably the nearest thing we have to objective and accurate data capture and if you unpick the results they make interesting reading. 1237 establishments raided, 250 girls 'rescued'. I put the latter term in inverted commas as I suspect that the 'rescued' girls included girls who were here of their own volition albeit with agreed debts to pay concerning their journey to this country, as opposed to girls brought here against their will. But if each establishment had an average of 5 girls already the figure of 5% trafficked looks high. Then there is the fact that these establishments were selected not randomly from the full sample set, but as the ones most likely to have trafficked girls. All of the above lead one to suspect that the true %age is nearer the 1%, if that, guessed at by LutonJenny in another thread.

I couldn't see much of relevance on Google Scholar. Looks like the Universities can't get funding to do the type of independant research that the Government would need if it were to be serious about tackling the problem. But we all know that they are not serious about it. Their agenda is elsewhere.

They have gone for the Swedish Model, pun intended. It goes like this. Reduce demand by making life difficult for the punter. Demand drops and supply drops accordingly so, if the %age of trafficked girls remains constant on the supply side, then the absolute number of trafficked girls must go down. Then they quote stats to say that it has worked. Problems with the model: Firstly how do we know their Swedish stats are any more credible than the ones they quote for this country. Secondly who is to say that the supply side will be that price-elastic. Most likely demand would fall to begin with then start to creep back up with supply falling slightly to meet it at a new and slightly lower price equilibrium with almost the same volume of trade including a still small, but now perhaps slightly larger, proportion of unfortunate trafficked girls, with the absolute number remaining stubbornly the same.

But we all know that the real motivation is not to save the poor girls, but disapproval of men having access to any form of prostitution, by a small number of government ministers, egged on by a bunch of extremists who think that all forms of penetration of women by men are inherently violent, and should be punished ideally by castration without anaesthetic.

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Bottom Liner. A well thought out post, but what are you asking?

We all know that the statistics used by politicians are a load of bollocks.

Nobody is in favour of trafficked women in the sex industry.

Something does need to be done about it.

Unfortunately, the government is approaching the situation from a position of ignorance, they are misguided at best.

I don't have any answers, I just know that the proposed legislation will be counterproductive.

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how do we know their Swedish stats are any more credible than the ones they quote for this country.

Statistics can be manipulated.

I suspect that the 'success' in Sweden goes like this:

Don't bother to find or investigate offences then use the absence of convictions as evidence that the law works as a deterrent.

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Statistics can be manipulated.

I suspect that the 'success' in Sweden goes like this:

Don't bother to find or investigate offences then use the absence of convictions as evidence that the law works as a deterrent.

Quite Tom.

I have a mate who is a high-ranking Officer and he tells me that allocation of resources is heavily politically influenced so that Governments can get the outcomes they need to support their position.

I'd take the Swedish stats with a large boulder of salt until convinced otherwise by reliable evidence obtained independently.

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Bottom Liner. A well thought out post, but what are you asking?

We all know that the statistics used by politicians are a load of bollocks.

Nobody is in favour of trafficked women in the sex industry.

Something does need to be done about it.

Unfortunately, the government is approaching the situation from a position of ignorance, they are misguided at best.

I don't have any answers, I just know that the proposed legislation will be counterproductive.

Well a start would be evidence collected professionally by skilled people without axes to grind, and provided with sufficient resources to do so. You cannot plan your strategy until you have properly surveyed the battlefield.

Thereafter I am not sure what could be done but I would then be sure of 2 things. Firstly the true scale of the problem, the problem being defined as the abduction of girls from their country of origin to work as sex slaves here.

The second thing is that it is often the very process itself of information-gathering that leads to the implementation strategy necessary for resolution.

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Unfortunately, the government is approaching the situation from a position of ignorance, they are misguided at best.

Why change the habit of a lifetime?

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.....statistics..

Pentameter 1 and 2 are probably the nearest thing we have to objective and accurate data capture and if you unpick the results they make interesting reading. 1237 establishments raided, 250 girls 'rescued'. I put the latter term in inverted commas as I suspect that the 'rescued' girls included girls who were here of their own volition albeit with agreed debts to pay concerning their journey to this country, as opposed to girls brought here against their will. But if each establishment had an average of 5 girls already the figure of 5% trafficked looks high. Then there is the fact that these establishments were selected not randomly from the full sample set, but as the ones most likely to have trafficked girls. All of the above lead one to suspect that the true %age is nearer the 1%, if that, guessed at by LutonJenny in another thread.

.

I do believe that the proportion of those rescued contained quite a large percentage of Chinese girls on a debt bondage... Ok, it is not completely a brilliant scenario but they are not forced to do this and came willingly knowing that they had to pay off some debt first for getting into the country. And my hunch is that none of them wanted to get sent back home..

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Quite Tom.

I have a mate who is a high-ranking Officer and he tells me that allocation of resources is heavily politically influenced so that Governments can get the outcomes they need to support their position.

I'd take the Swedish stats with a large boulder of salt until convinced otherwise by reliable evidence obtained independently.

The thing is no official review has been done in Sweden about the effects of the law until the one just started recently.. However the person they have put in charge to do the review has already been told that she is not allowed to say the law has been a bad thing nor that it should be scrapped !!

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The thing is no official review has been done in Sweden about the effects of the law until the one just started recently.. However the person they have put in charge to do the review has already been told that she is not allowed to say the law has been a bad thing nor that it should be scrapped !!

This is scandalous.

Firstly because how she is put in an impossible situation. If the evidence shows the strategy failed she will find it impossible to contradict the findings of her own team and say it succeeded. Ideally she should resign immediately and go to the Swedish press and complain about political interference. Then the government will have to give the replacement appointee a free hand. Incidentally it show the real agenda of the government there is the same as here.

Secondly it means Jacqui Smith's key argument for the current 'strategy', that it worked in Sweden, is based on evidence that does not yet exist.

Just shows how sloppy our journalism is that the grub street reptiles didn't check the Swedish position with their agencies there. But then they haven't really challenged some of the daft stats bandied around already.

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The thing is no official review has been done in Sweden about the effects of the law until the one just started recently.. However the person they have put in charge to do the review has already been told that she is not allowed to say the law has been a bad thing nor that it should be scrapped !!
Politics. Gotta love it.

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Secondly it means Jacqui Smith's key argument for the current 'strategy', that it worked in Sweden, is based on evidence that does not yet exist.
One of the biggest Swedish newspapers, did an investigetive series on how the new law had fared out a year or two ago. They talked to police, to active independents, and even to underground brothel operators. The picture was a mixed bag of good and bad results.

The good:

1. Almost no more street prostitution. (good IMO, since it can be pretty dangerous work.)

2. Less demand, so less prostitution overall ("good" since that was the stated goal of the law).

3. Easier to convict those involved in illegal activities like pimping and trafficking.

The bad:

1. Harder to find those involved in illegal activities like pimping and trafficking, since all business is now underground and closer tied to other organized crime, maily drug trading. And they know how to stay off the radar. Also, if a customer suspects a woman is held in prostitution against her will, he's less likely to report it, since he'd face charges for buying or trying to buy sex. So all in all, a worse situation for women who are victims of trafficking.

2. A ridiculous situation for the still legal, independent sex workers. They are selling something that nobody is allowed to buy.

3. More underaged prostitution. Teenagers selling sex via social sites on the net. Probably a market created by the absence available legal options for the johns.

Not exactly a black-and-white success story.

If the current, politically driven, review leads to the same conclusinos, we'll have to see. I have to high hopes for that.

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Thanks for your post Enmat - illuminating and following the pattern predicted by lots of the posters here, which is not surprising because, as suppliers and customers, we are the real experts.

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