In 2014, the Canadian parliament, then dominated by the country's Conservative Party, passed Bill C-36, which for the first time made paying for sex a crime. The new law also outlawed receiving a material benefit from the sale of sex, as well as the
advertising of sexual service.
The bill was misleadingly titled the Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act, but the actual aim of the legislation was to serve as a first step toward stamping out sex work altogether in Canada.
When the 'Liberal' Party won a majority shortly after the bill took effect, the new government led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged to review the effects of the law after five years.
With 2019 coming to a close, that five-year wait is also
up, and Canadian sex worker rights activists say that the 'Liberal' government has done nothing to evaluate or reform the law -- which they say has put sex workers' lives at risk , and been a gift to sexual predators.
According to a VICE report on the
law's effects, Canadian sex workers now can't work in brothels, can't hire security and can't properly screen clients, because those clients generally will not give their true identities for fear of arrest.
A spokesperson for Canada's Ministry of
Justice said only that the law mandates that a committee study the effects of Bill C-36, and that committee is now being formed.
China is to end a punishment system for prostitution that allowed police to hold sex workers and their clients in custody for up to two years in prison camps it euphemistically called 'education centres'. Detainees were forced to work, allegedly making
toys and household goods.
The detention system will come to an end on 29 December. Those still in custody will be released, according to Xinhua, China's state media.
Prostitution remains illegal in China. It carries punishments of up to 15 days
in detention and fines of up to 5,000 yuan (£546).
A 2013 report by Human Rights Watch interviewed 140 sex workers, clients, police and specialists and found that many sex workers were beaten by police in an attempt to coerce confessions.
isn't totally abandoning the idea of 're-educatio'n. Authorities in the country claim a number of camps in the north-west region of Xinjiang are voluntary education camps that help to combat extremism.
Australia's Northern Territory Parliament has voted to decriminalise sex work through the Sex Industry Bill 2019 . The Bill decriminalises brothels, soliciting and indoor sex work, and gives sex workers access to workplace health and safety protections
already extended to other workers in the state.
CEO of Scarlet Alliance, Jules Kim said :
This is a momentous day for all sex workers and sets a positive example that sex workers are valued members of the community,
deserving of rights and protections. We applaud the NT Government for listening to sex workers and the evidence in fully decriminalising sex work in the NT. Sex work is work and it is fantastic that it is finally being recognised as such. We hope that
these critical reforms will demonstrate the importance of best practice partnerships between sex workers and government and lead to similar campaigns for the decriminalisation of sex work in other states and territories throughout Australia.