Prostitution Facts

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4 - Prostitution Facts

Prostitution is the purchase of sexual services through the exchange of money, shelter or gifts by one person in a position of power and privilege to have access of another person’s body.

• It is demand driven with primarily men paying for sexual pleasure without care or concern for the victim.
• It is an intentional process of controlling another person for one’s sexual gratification.
• It is not choice, rather it is an act of coercion and forced compliance, eliminating any viable options or avenues for exiting for the victim to exit.

Prostitution has nothing to do with equality; it always involves an imbalance of age, …

• It is not equality but an imbalance of age, economic status, position, educational and career level between the buyer and the victim.
• It is a form of racial systemic oppression, severely affecting immigrants, indigenous and other various cultural and ethnic groups, the homeless, and those living in poverty, mainly women and children.
• It is a violation of one’s human rights.
• It is inherently harmful, a public health problem for all, especially the victim, predator and society as a whole.
• It is a serious criminal offence against human dignity and the integrity of the person and it is an affront to human sexuality.
It is not work. Rather, it treats a person…
• It is not work, rather treating a person as a commodity to be used sexually, abused and discarded.

The buying of so-called sexual services happens in many venues such as pornography, internet based cyber-sex, strip clubs, sugaring and exotic dancing.

Prostitution is not safer if moved indoors. Research by Melissa Farley, who studied 854 women, of whom 100 were from Vancouver Downtown Eastside, showed the following:

56% Aboriginal women and girls
91% Physically Assaulted
76% Raped
75% Stabbed, beaten and had bones broken
74% PTSD diagnosis

“For a great part of 1992 I lived in a beautiful apartment. I drove my expensive car. I bought lovely clothes and traveled extensively out of the country. I felt invincible. And I was miserable to the core. I hated myself because I hated my life. All the things I came to possess meant nothing. I could not face myself in the mirror. Working in prostitution lost my soul.”

(Debra Boyer, Lynn Chapman & Brent Marshall, 1993, Survival Sex in King County: Helping Women Out, King County Women's Advisory Board, Seattle: Northwest Resource Associates.)

How Pimps Recruit

Harmony has now started an agency called Treasures whose mission is to equip and empower women in the sex industry and survivors of trafficking to live healthy lives.

Getting Out and Staying Out

How My Childhood Led Me To Stripping

Exiting Prostitution

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