Tag Archive | violence

Enforcement against sex workers to be used as ‘last resort’: VPD report


The Vancouver police board will next week consider adopting new sex worker enforcement guidelines encouraging officers to treat sex trade workers with dignity and respect in order to build relationships and increase the safety and protection of vulnerable women working the streets.

Women feel no safer now than when Pickton prowled Downtown Eastside, inquiry told


Lee Hamiltion addresses the commission.

Vancouver sex trade workers are still being told by police to move to dark and dangerous “containment zones” north of East Hastings St., the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry was told Tuesday.

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Prostitution sweeps on hold since December

Move followed announcement of ‘pattern’ in homicides


Ottawa police have not conducted any prostitution sweeps since Chief Vern White’s announced in December that a “pattern” had been identified in a number of unsolved murders of prostitutes.

Since Dec. 9, when White warned the city’s sex workers to take precautions because of a potential threat – police have been loath to use the word “serial killer,” but the link between killings is ominous – advocacy groups have been calling for a moratorium on prostitution sweeps.

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Community groups seek legal advice on prostitution sweeps

Ottawa police refuse request for moratorium on sweeps while they probe possible predator

Six community groups are seeking legal advice after Ottawa police Chief Vern White last week refused their request for a moratorium on prostitution sweeps.
Bryonie Baxter, executive director of the Elizabeth Fry Society of Ottawa, said a consortium of local groups met with police Feb. 8 to argue that sweeps put sex workers at risk by forcing them into remote areas away from circles of support.
Bryonie Baxter, executive director of the Elizabeth Fry Society of Ottawa, said a consortium of local groups met with police Feb. 8 to argue that sweeps put sex workers at risk by forcing them into remote areas away from circles of support.(CBC)

“We asked Chief Vern White to prioritize women’s safety by putting the risk to the lives of sex workers over nuisance complaints during a time which he has identified poses heightened risk to sex workers,” said Bryonie Baxter, executive director of the Elizabeth Fry Society of Ottawa, in a press release. “We are effectively asking the police to take one operational tool out of their toolbox and we in turn offered to work with police and concerned citizens to effect longer-term solutions to their concerns.”

On Tuesday, Insp. Uday Jaswal told CBC News the police force can’t choose which laws to enforce and which laws to ignore. Jaswal said prostitution sweeps will continue and he added that police remain committed to discussing the issue.

In a meeting with police on Feb. 8, Baxter said the group argued that sweeps put sex workers at risk by forcing them into more remote areas away from circles of support.

Their request came two months after White issued a warning that police had discovered a pattern in unsolved assaults and homicides on sex workers in Ottawa.

“We believe the Ottawa police owe a duty of care to sex workers which extends beyond merely warning them about the existence of a predator,” Baxter said. “It also involves proactively working to eliminate practices which increase the risk of harm to this group of women.”

The six groups include the Elizabeth Fry Society of Ottawa, the Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies, POWER (Prostitutes of Ottawa-Gatineau Work, Educate, Resist), the Sexual Assault Support Centre of Ottawa (SASC), Families of Sisters in Spirit and the AIDS Committee of Ottawa.


Edmonton man sentenced to lengthy prison term for sexual assaults on sex-trade workers


EDMONTON – A former Edmonton real estate agent was sentenced Friday to 10 1/2 years in prison for three violent sexual assaults on downtown sex-trade workers.

Olden Yadir Maldonado, 29, was convicted in January of two counts of sexual assault causing bodily harm, three counts of unlawful confinement, two counts of threats to cause death and sexual assault.

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Journey to the Supreme Court

Yesterday was the culmination of a pretty amazing journey for me. I sat in the front row at the Supreme Court of Canada as the as the federal government tried to persuade the country’s top court that Sheri Kiselbach, a former sex worker with 30 years of experience and Sex Workers United Against Violence (SWUAV), a non-profit organization run by and for street-based sex workers in the Downtown Eastside, do not have standing to challenge the laws related to adult prostitution because they are not directly affected. Among the people sitting with me wereSheri and DJ. DJ is a member of SWUAV and has been involved with Pivot since we first started looking at the issue of sex workers’ safety ten years ago.

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Sheila Farmer And The Brothel That Never Was

All Sheila Farmer was trying to do was guarantee the safety of her and fellow consensual sex workers from violence, rape and robbery, that she was prosecuted is a national disgrace…

Sheila Farmer speaks of her fight against being accused of Brothel keeping

It was January 3rd, 2012. Stepping over the broken-winged corpses of umbrellas on Croydon’s pavements, a rain-drenched, gale-battered group of approximately thirty supporters, myself included, approached the Crown Court to witness the conclusion to a landmark case.

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High whore holy day: A San Francisco tradition turns nine

Speaking out for sex: Posters from the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers.


It was Saturday, December 17. A jazz funeral was being held for victims of violence against sex workers at the Center for Sex and Culture. Post-event, its message was still resonating in its attendees. “The holiday was beautiful,” sex activist and post-porn star Annie Sprinkle told the Guardian about the ninth year of the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers that she helped to found.

Sex workers call for hate crime law, end to violence

As the Missing Women’s Inquiry continues, sex workers and supporters lit candles on the steps of a police detachment yesterday, part of a global day of action.

By David P. Ball

Sex workers and their allies rallied outside the Downtown Eastside (DTES) police station Saturday, calling on Vancouver police to treat women in the neighbourhood with respect, and to put a stop to violence against people in the sex industry.

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Sex workers won’t be ‘victims’

Protest draws attention to recent violence against prostitutes

By Meghan Hurley, Ottawa Citizen

Ottawa-based sex workers and their allies called for an end to prostitution sweeps Saturday during a protest held on Parliament Hill.

About 50 people participated in the protest, which took place just more than a week after Ottawa police chief Vern White issued an unprecedented public safety warning to women after police investigators discovered a pattern in homicides among city prostitutes.

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