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starman

Norway adopts and improves the Swedish model

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Lol. That is ludicrous.

How on earth would they police such a thing?

I love it when governments come out with ideas for schemes (whatever they may be), without worrying about the fact that they're almost completely impossible to implement.

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This is so crazy that you can for sure expect it to become popular among UK fems and Christians

http://www.european-viewpoint.com/nekkid-blogger/norway-to-criminalize-purchase-of-sex-abroad-as-well/

Looks interesting to say the least, however I do wonder quite what the fascination, or maybe it is just a fad, is with banning the purchase but not the sale, it does make me wonder if it is just plain and simple running-scared of doing the logical thing which is to ban paid sex per se, are they scared of a prostitute claiming some strange thing like "restraint of trade", or some obscure "human rights" issue I wonder? If the claim of "restraint of trade" were made in this country by a prostitute then it might be interesting as prostitution has a legal precedent for being a trade/profession.

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Lol. That is ludicrous.

How on earth would they police such a thing?

I love it when governments come out with ideas for schemes (whatever they may be), without worrying about the fact that they're almost completely impossible to implement.

Marching a hoodie to a hole-in-the-wall springs to mind.

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Marching a hoodie to a hole-in-the-wall springs to mind.

Actually per-mile road-charging was what came to my mind first.

The idea that they can just tag every car ever produced, ever, with a kind of tracker that would be more accurate than current GPS, irremovable, be powered by a perpetual motion generator, work all of the time, and never mind that such a product doesn't actually exist.

Plus there are people who drive without tax and insurance, and/or whose car is declared SORN anyway.

And all drivers would just accept this and get their car fixed with the new system, immediately.

It's like drawing up usage guidelines for a time machine you haven't invented yet.

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Interesting to read the article - I'm sure I read somewhere that Norway has actually rejected this idea, however I was especially interested in the part that said it would be an offence even if the crime was committed abroad. I know that currently you can be prosecuted in this country for offences committed abroad provided the offence is illegal in both countries and you haven't already been dealt with by the authorities in that country. But I was under the impression that recently the law had been updated in this country so that for certain (sexual) crimes you could be prosecuted even if the offence was legal in the country you visited - haven't been able to find anything online. I'm sure I read a while ago that when Gary Glitter is released from jail in Vietnam he could face charges over here for the child porn that was found on his computer by Vietnamese authorities even though the law in Vietnam doesn't criminalise this and there's no evidence the images were downloaded anywhere other than Vietnam. Anybody know anything on this? although I'm sure nobody has any sympathy for Gary Glitter it would be legally open to challenge; Like the writer of the article says we're free to drive at 200mph on a German autobahn even though we'd likely get 6 months in jail for dangerous driving under British law.

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Looks interesting to say the least, however I do wonder quite what the fascination, or maybe it is just a fad, is with banning the purchase but not the sale, it does make me wonder if it is just plain and simple running-scared of doing the logical thing which is to ban paid sex per se, are they scared of a prostitute claiming some strange thing like "restraint of trade", or some obscure "human rights" issue I wonder? If the claim of "restraint of trade" were made in this country by a prostitute then it might be interesting as prostitution has a legal precedent for being a trade/profession.

...I think there is a contradiction in term.

I think society would like to ban prostitution and at the same time keep it this is why we have these 'airy-fairy' laws.

In fact many aspects of society is based on such inherent contradictions

Just a few thoughts

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That article, and the one it links to, just doens't make sense.

The one quote: "Criminalizing won't make things worse for prostitutes."

Huh? Surely it does the exact opposite?

The WGs need clients that break the law so that they get work?

:(

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The obvious flaw in their rationale is that they say that people aren't commodities, which most agree with and then go on to fudge the issue and claim that sex isn't a commodity - which clearly it can be.

Making a citizen guilty outside the normal jurisdiction is one of the ways they seek to curb people like glitter and those that go on sex tourism for paedophilia.

I daresay that if I was charged by UK government for having sex with a spanish hooker in spain (it is legal in Spain) I would be looking up human rights legislation.

We MUST always be aware of the distortion of facts and terms by the radical feminists who say one thing that you cannot possibly object to and then add on to it something out of sequence, it is a political debating trick that Tony Benn used to use.

For the sake of illustration I repeat...

People aren't commodities (the anti trafficking point), therefore sex isn't a commodity (untrue)

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More scaremongering...

Norway has not adopted the Swedish model, The minister of justice has only proposed the new law.

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So some guy with a pre-nuptual agreement that promises say 1 million dollars for each year married in a divorce settlement is breaking the law. After all he is paying just about the going rate, £150 per hour.

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Interesting to read the article - I'm sure I read somewhere that Norway has actually rejected this idea, .

since then there's been a change of government, conservatives out social democrats back

This is a comment from the Norwegian equivalent to scotpep and English collective of p's.

On Norway adapting the Swedish law.

Criminalizing the purchase of sexual services.

A Summary by Arne Randers-Pehrson, Pro Sentret

www.prosentret.no

The present situation.

Last spring all three political parties in Government have voted in favour of having a law that prohibits the buying of sexual services in Norway. On this background the Norwegian Ministry of Justice and Police has made a draft for a new law. This proposal has been out on a public hearing where all who have a say could give their input. The hearing ended in the middle of October. All services involved in practical work towards sexworkers or their clients expressed their scepticism on such a law, as did several institutions dealing with human rights. Several feminist organisations were in favour, as were most local police authorities. The Police Directorate, the Public Prosecutor and the Data Inspectorate are not in favour. The Ministry is now preparing a Parliamentary Bill. This Bill will probably be presented to the Parliament this spring. The Parliament will vote for the law before summer and also set a date for the implementation of the new law. Thus it will probably not come into use before 01.01. 2009. Until then it is still not illegal to buy sexual services, except from a person under the age of 18.

The present proposal

The proposed text will be an addition to the present

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continued.

What do we anticipate in the long run?

Looking at Swedish experiences, we can assume that the effect will depend very much on how the law is applied. The political signal to be read out of the draft, is that the law is expected to be enforced - it should not be a symbolic law. Also taking the debate this year into consideration, we can assume that there will be more policing in most places where prostitution takes place, both in-door and out-door. When a new law is introduced, the legislator will have a need to demonstrate that there is a shift in policy at this particular issue. As it will not be easy to apply the law effectively on clients (in Sweden only a few pr.thousands of the actual "crimes" are prosecuted), disturbing the marked will possibly be a more likely approach from the police.

Also from the Swedish experience, we can assume that street-prostitution will diminish dramatically the first year and then slowly return. The sexworkers remaining on the streets will probably be the ones who have few other options, like i.v. drugusers and a few migrants. They expect to be more exposed to bad clients as the good clients either quit or go to more secluded arenas.

Many sexworkers expect to be more dependent upon facilitators (landlords, organisers, advertisers, managers, pimps etc.). As mentioned before, quite a few are considering moving to the in-door scene and to use Internet for advertising. To do this they usually need the assistance from another person.

Some clients, probably the ones who have moral doubts about buying, will stop buying.

A more uncertain - but disturbing - perspective is that shift to restrictive legal strategies easily lead to more restrictive measures and attitudes in the long run. In my opinion, it is an unfortunate fact that so few decision makers have viewed the criminalization in a broader context, like the general criminal policy (what should be the grounds for (re)introducing legislative measures in the Penal Code, how do we relate to zero-tolerance policy, what should society's priorities be, how does these measures connect to other kinds of marginalizing groups of people etc.?). We also notice that there is a discussion going on in Sweden to increase the level of penalty, on including the law on pimping in the trafficking regulations and on using the full range of penalties (= prison sentence). Also some of the arguments used are close to arguments on banning prostitution as such (both selling and buying).

What will Pro Sentret do?

The law will be a reality in a years time. On a short-term basis we are working to have provisions that are as little harmful as possible for the sexworkers. We will argue for a "Finnish model", but realise that this is not what the legislator has proposed. We will also argue against any possible action that violates the integrity of sexworkers - like communication control.

We also have to prepare for changes in the prostitution scene, and should be prepared to change our service accordingly. Having the experience from Sweden in mind, we probably have to focus less on the visible parts of the marked, more on indoor prostitution and on working on the Internet. To document changes will be a priority.

There is also a need to provide information on the effects of the law, as the sexworkers themselves see it. We will focus on violence and health issues.

As we now see signs of harassment and further marginalization of sexworkers, we also have to highlight human rights issues and legal support.

However, the debate has pawed the ground for social measures too. We will work more on skills acquisition and alternative professional careers.

Lessons learned

I am quite sure this discussion will appear in several European countries. For those facing such discussions it can be useful:

To make a clear distinction on trafficking and prostitution - also considering the Finnish model.

To point out the lack of documentation of the effects (and costs) of the Swedish model.

To point out the fact that most arguments in favour of such a law are of a principal nature, not considering the practical effects and costs and who is paying the price. I think the argument against criminalization that had the most impact is that the safety of sexworkers will be at risk.

Not to underestimate the fear of trafficking - also questioning if the Swedish model really is a good instrument in fighting human trafficking. There is no solid evidence of that.

Not to underestimate the fear of "contamination of public places". Be aware that changes in the public prostitution scene with unfamiliar groups and approaches, easily can trigger the demand for simple, restrictive measures. We have to consider how to deal with this.

To consider what approaches to have on clients ("The convenient enemies").

Further reading:

For an update on what is happening, Pro Sentret's web site will have information in Norwegian and English on the most important developments www.prosentret.no

For background information, we recommend the report given by a working group under the Norwegian Ministry of Police and Justice in 2004. The report on legal regulation of the purchase of sexual services in Sweden and the Netherlands can be downloaded in English at

http://www.regjeringen.no/en/dep/jd....l-Services.html?id=106214

www.prosentret.no

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...These are probably some factors:

The visible prostitution scene – the streets – have changed considerably the last 3 years. Nigerian (and to some extent Bulgarian) women are dominating the street-scene, and also sometime selling sex outside the traditional prostitution area. Most politicians (and also many others) assume that they are victims of trafficking, and are concerned: For the well being of the presumed victims, but also for the fear of organized crime.

There might also be an element of xenophobia here. Though the total amount of sex workers have not increased dramatically, it is the nationality, skin-colour and visibility of the sexworkers that has changed for the last years.

Public nuisance issues have been a considerable part of the discussion. The “dignity and cleanliness” of our streets etc. is threatened, and introducing law and order seems to be the proper answer (This is – as most people know – a trend in many European cities).

It is not only about sexworkers, but also beggars, homeless people, unemployed migrants, people belonging to the roma community, drug users etc.

The newspaper coverage of the Nigerian women in prostitution in Norway has been the theme for a master thesis in Sociology at the University of Bergen “Women who cross borders – black magic.” It can be downloaded from our web site...

What are the effects so far?

Among the sexworkers there is quite a lot of anxiety, fear and insecurity of what the new law will bring. Many sexworkers feel that the law is an attack on them and their rights – marginalizing them even more. Also quite a few seem to think that the law will come into action very soon. A few (wrongly) assume that the law only will have an effect on migrant sexworkers and their clients.

We have seen some cases of harassment on streetworkers that can be related to the debate and the expectation of a new law. There are traces of racism in some of these harassments.

Interesting where issues of race/nationality enters into the equation too...

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Two arguments we need to take head-on.

1) The fudge - the jump from trafficking abhorence to roping in ordinary consensual prostitution.

2) The radical feminist papers (non-academic) that they say say 'prove' that all prostitution is violence against women.

The human condition is born in violence, sex by the nature of penetration is a form of violence and death is often violent, so one might argue that the human condition is enjoyed within a context of violence.

We need more like Pia to speak up and talk about consensual prostitution and prostitution as a post-feminist choice of career, as our enemies focus on non-consensual.

Safe, sane and consensual prostitution I believe would be largely acceptable to the majority.

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The human condition is born in violence, sex by the nature of penetration is a form of violence and death is often violent, so one might argue that the human condition is enjoyed within a context of violence.

"...sex by the nature of penetration is a form of violence" What?:( Oh no it isn't! It's a mutually agreed and agreeable physical act (barring rape, sexual assault etc). Is shaking someone's hand an act of violence? Is kissing someone an act of violence? So is fucking someone an act of violence?

I agree with what you say in the rest of your post but, unless I've misunderstood you, I don't agree with that part of it at all.

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What has violence against women or trafficking of labour got to do with a decent, honest guy who wishes to pay for time and companionship. It's always finding somebody to blame for the inadequacies of those we choose to represent us. Impending famine in Africa? Again, it's always us who are made to feel guilty when those that have the power to eradicate this are too busy bailing out banks and bowing down to Wall Street.

I despair :(

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What has violence against women or trafficking of labour got to do with a decent, honest guy who wishes to pay for time and companionship.

And that is the nub of the argument, you are starting from the opposite end of the spectrum, their end is that any male paying for sex cannot be a decent honest guy, and unless and until that basic situation is resolved, there cannot be any resolution, unfortunately one of the golden rules in politics is that you must not involve yourself in basic details, detail is not headline grabbing and will not further your career, hence the current flailing by all those who perceive prostitution to be the current hot-topic.

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...and on a bit of a tangent, did you know that Norway prohibited alcohol from 1916 to 1927 (US prohibition was from 1920 to 1933)? How successful was that? :(

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Extreme radical feminists labour the violence point for good reason. If there is violence or a threat of violence then it is considered that that gives such an imbalance of power between the parties that no true consent can be achieved.

ie they scupper the Pia type position that some women consent.

(they say) AS there is no true consent between the parties the government should legislate to make men criminals for implicitly always using a form of violence to get prostituted sex.

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It really fucking annoys me when other people claim to speak on my behalf, and especially so when I disagree with them, and they tell me I'm in denial. Because they know better than me, of course.

And it really pisses me off when it's women who are denying me a voice. :(

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It really fucking annoys me when other people claim to speak on my behalf, and especially so when I disagree with them, and they tell me I'm in denial. Because they know better than me, of course.

And it really pisses me off when it's women who are denying me a voice. :o

Is this not what happens to us in our everyday lives in this thing called society...??

We give over 'our rights' to the 'government', police etc to 'look after us' and supposedly in our best interest too, even if we disagree with it....

:(

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I wonder if this is about protecting women's rights or wives' rights.

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This is so crazy that you can for sure expect it to become popular among UK fems and Christians

http://www.european-viewpoint.com/nekkid-blogger/norway-to-criminalize-purchase-of-sex-abroad-as-well/

Not only in Norway...

U.S. State Dept Warns on Prostitute Use

People who buy sex acts fuel the demand for sex trafficking. Irrespective of whether prostitution is legal in the host country, employees should not in any way abet sex trafficking or solicit people in prostitution. DOS [Department of State] employees who engage in this conduct are subject to discipline.

Penalties range from admonishment, reprimand, suspension to separation from Federal service, depending on the circumstances.

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More fudging of concepts at work here...

People are not a commodity - probably true... then they say therefore sex is not a commodity - but why not?

parts of people undoubtedly are a commodity, in some countries you can sell your blood or kidneys, child birth can be purchased, my time and labour can be bought (if you are rich), virtauly everything else about being human is marketable, so why not some time and a happy ending?

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