Sex Work and Trafficking: Can Human Rights Lead Us Out of the Impasse?

Tripti Tandon, Gabriel Armas-Cardona, Anand Grover (2014): Sex Work and Trafficking: Can Human Rights Lead Us Out of the Impasse?, Health and Human Rights Journal. Accessed June 12, 2015.

Sex work and its relationship to trafficking is one of the more divisive policy issues of our times, as seen in the ongoing debate in Canada over a bill that views prostitution as inherently dangerous, affecting vulnerable women and offending their dignity.[1]At the risk of over-simplification, the two perspectives on sex work are: i) it is seen as a cause or consequence of, or akin to, trafficking, exploitation, and violence: ii) it is seen as consensual sex between adults for money or other valuable consideration, distinct from trafficking. Although there has been an impasse resulting from the divergence of these views, there is increasing recognition that the reality is complex and individualized; people experience sex work across a spectrum between compulsion, constrained decisions, and choice.

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