Assignment on Gender and Crime Sex Work
Added on - 21 Apr 2020
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ESSAY2|P a g eThere is a very famous saying that “sex sells” and is usually used in context of advertising,where the people resort to sex for selling their product. And each time an advertisement is shownwomen are presented as the centre of sexual fantasy and are often projected in a derogativemanner, almost like sex objects (Streitmatter, 2004).Sex work is inherently exploitative ofwomen, be it in the more sophisticated world of advertisements or the downwardly looked uponwork of prostitution. Even the word prostitution puts the focus of women engaging in sex formoney, in the minds of majority. Sex work particularly becomes exploitive for the migrantworkers, where the women often have to resort to prostitution in order to earn their livelihood(Anderson and Andrijasevic, 2008). And at such instances, sex work takes the form of sextrafficking, even though the same is a distinguished subject, where the women are taken acrossborder, to indulge in sexual activities, for earning their daily bread. At some instances, sex workis allowed, and at other instances, the same is just tolerated for the sake of it (Sunday NewsOnline, 2017). In the following parts, the sex work has been analysed in context of the lawsurrounding it, to highlight that indeed sex work results in exploitation of women.Sullivan (2010) has highlighted that there has been a moderate opening for legal sex work in thepast three decades. In a number of jurisdictions, the escort agencies and brothels have beenlegalized, which has led to decriminalization of street based sex work in New South Wales. Theapproach taken by the nation is very different from the other developed nations like Canada andUnited States where majority of prostitution continues to be illegal. However, each Australianjurisdiction has different approach towards prostitution law and towards its policies. The reasonwhy the change was adopted by the governments, from sex work being barred, to the same beingallowed, stems from the strength of the sex worker advocacy groups, the feminist movementssupporting law reform, and the different other contributory factors.The need for bringing out the law stemmed from the need to protect the ones who were alreadyengaged in sex work. There were a number of incidents where the women working in thebrothels were being tortured and abused in the name of sex; and the migrant women were beingforced to indulge in sex work to just survive; even though the brothels in the nation had the safestworking environment in comparison to the other places in the world. Apart from this, the sexworkers had to live in fear of arrest. But to give them a proper standing, and to maximize theoccupational health and safety for the workers, the law was drawn (Sullivan, 2010).
ESSAY3|P a g eSimilar to Australia is the case of Sweden, where the women’s movement was a key factor ininfluencing the government policy in this regard. However, unlike Australia, buying sex has beenmade illegal in Sweden as a result of radical feminism, where the fears about foreign prostitutesand the liberal practices had a huge role to play. The ban on purchase of sex is deemed as anawareness of tendency of the Swedish people to take a strict stand on the issues, where the othernations have been liberal. Gould (2001) highlighted that the liberal feminists have defended thisposition that it is the right of the women to sell sexual services; and that by criticising the samethe women would be treated as victims. However, the pragmatists have highlighted the moralityof prostitution, where it was held that punitive laws were impractical and there was a need toreplace with something where everything could work. However, the feminists like Shrage andGreen have highlighted that prostitution is morally repugnant, exploitative and degrading forwomen (Green, 1989; Shrage, 1989). This notion is quite right. How can someone be allowed toexploit the body of another, just to satisfy their sexual urges for money? Prostitution is a type ofviolence which hits the women and gives them a degraded status in the society.Without even exaggerated the facts, prostitution can be deemed as a synonym of sex trafficking,even when the two concepts are very different in terms of their core definitions. The reason forstating this is that in order to satisfy the urges of men, the pimps often exploit the foreign girls,where these girls are mistreated by their clients, apart from spreading life threatening sexualdiseases. The girls who are brought from the east or the one who enter the nation on their choice,but, belong from east, are not well versed with the use of protection, owing to a lack ofprotection in their tradition. In their nations, condoms and other protective measures are simplytoo expensive. And in order to further the “urge” of the national clients, the pimps flood thenation with prostitutes from poor nations. The liberal view associated with the European nations,and Netherlands in particular, shows that prostitution is simply unacceptable. This is particularlyin context of Dutch, where there has been a history of colonial exploitation. In the mentality ofthe Swedish people thus, the idea of prostitution as a job was an abomination (Gould, 2001).FitzGerald (2010) presented the case of female trafficked migrant, where the vulnerability of thefemale trafficked migrants in United Kingdom was highlighted. She questioned on regulation ofthe state on the bodies and behaviours of the female trafficked migrants, which was entangledwith the anti-immigrant agendas, where the aim was only to extent the power extra-territorially,