Georgina Perry has been the service manager for Open Doors, a clinical, case management and outreach service for sex workers in London. She speaks of the overhyped issue of trafficking in the run up to the Olympics
Philippine President Benigno S. Aquino III has signed into law the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, a far-ranging piece of legislation that was passed by the Senate in June and made official last week. A government official said that the new law is
intended to curtail a number of offenses frequently committed on the internet, but that it also prohibits certain content-related behavior.
Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said in a radio interview that punishable acts under the new law include offenses against the confidentiality, integrity and availability of computer data system, illegal access, illegal interception,
data interference, system interference and misuse of devices.
The law also includes offenses such as computer-related forgery, fraud, libel and identity theft, as well as content-related offenses such as cybersex and child pornography.
The Act is particularly miserable in sections defining banning webcam girls, sex video chat or cybersex. The act defines cybersex as the wilful engagement, maintenance, control, or operation, directly or indirectly, of any lascivious exhibition of
sexual organs or sexual activity, with the aid of a computer system, for favour or consideration .
The law states that the regional trial court shall have jurisdiction over any violation of the provisions of this Act including any violation committed by a Filipino national regardless of the place of commission... if any of the elements was
committed within the Philippines .
Anyone breaking the law faces a fine of 250,000 Philippine pesos ($6,000; £ 3,700) and a jail term of up to six months.
One of the authors of the law, senator Edgardo Angara, said the act was needed to detect, investigate and suppress cybercrime such as hacking, cybersex, identity theft, spamming, and child pornography online.
The National Bureau of Investigation and the Philippine National Police are now meant to set up a cybercrime unit to exclusively handle cases involving violations of this act . To deal with these cases, the authorities are planning to create
cybercrime courts with specially trained judges.
Philippine media organisations have expressed concerns that it may also be used to curb press freedom because it lists internet libel as cybercrime. According to the act, someone found guilty of libellous comments online, including comments made on
social networks and blogs, could be jailed for up to 12 years with no possibility of parole.
A Spanish school offering a professional course in prostitution which it says guarantees a job offer on graduation, has survived its first legal challenge to be closed down.
For EUR100, students are taught the history of the world's oldest profession, how to use erotic toys and the most popular positions contained within the Kama Sutra.
The school began advertising the course in May, but within weeks the Valencian regional government filed a case with prosecutors, alleging that the school promoted prostitution, which is illegal in Spain.
But now prosecutors have said that there was not any evidence that a criminal offence had been committed because advertisements for students did not promote prostitution, constitute fraud and were not aimed at minors, reported The Times.
The venture has attracted the inevitable nutter flak but the school says it will make the trade safer. It will also ensure budding sex-workers will not fall foul of the law, with in depth descriptions of the industry's laws and how to work around them.
Esther Lopez Barcelo, a United Left MP in Valencia, said the party was considering appealing the ruling.
Amsterdam City Council has decided to rezone large sections of De Wallen, as it is known in Dutch, and shut down and evict brothels and other sex businesses which fail to co-operate.
The get-tough policy will come into effect in parallel with a new law banning tourists from the city's coffee shops , where cannabis and other drugs can be bought and consumed legally. The law is in force in Maastricht, and will apply nationwide
from January 1st next.
The miserable deputy mayor, Lodewijk Asscher, who is overseeing the anti-sex work campaign, said the red light area's enormous value made a legal challenge inevitable. He said:
De Wallen is big business, and sex industry bosses are always ready for a fight. Even before the outline zoning proposals were completed, we were aware that lawyers had been briefed and were preparing to pick holes in them wherever possible.
The district currently has 400 red-light windows, and Asscher said that should be reduced by 100 by 2017.
Sexwork.ie is an escort advertising company's blog on the 2012 Irish Government consultation on prostitution.
The site is keeping track of submissions to the Irish governments consultation on changing the country's prostitution laws.
The site has analysed the submission from the umbrella campaign group Turn Off the Red Light. It has also just published the consultation result from the most extremist of the Irish anti prostitution campaigners of Ruhama . Predictably it
has called for extreme punishments to all activities linked to sex work and of course the criminalisation of people who purchase sex.
New York's highest court is set to hear arguments on whether Nite Moves , a strip club in suburban Albany, deserves a state tax exemption similar to that for theater or ballet.
State tax officials say the club owes an 8% sales tax for admissions to the club and for so-called couch sales, where patrons pay for private lap dances, the Associated Press reports.
Nite Moves claims the dances are exempt under state tax law as live dramatic or musical arts performances, which applies to theater and ballet, the AP reports.
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman's office argues in its briefs that some Nite Moves performers have no dance training and simple pick it up by watching. Such a dancer isn't engaged in a genuine choreographic dance performance when she
removes her clothing, the brief says.
But Stephen Dick, the club's CFO, dismisses the notion that formal training should be any critera when its comes to entertainment.
A recent survey has revealed that Denmark's residents are strongly opposed to a ban on prostitution.
The news comes this week via a new study commissioned by the Jyllands Posten news agency and conducted by Ramboll Analyse/Danmark. Results from the survey revealed an overwhelming majority of Danes think such a ban would only bring additional danger for
those working within the sex industry.
Figures showed that 67% of respondents were against a prostitution ban, whilst only around 20% said they would be in favour of such legislation.
Despite the findings, some Danish lawmakers predictably continue to push for changes to legislation. Rasmus Horn Langhoff of the Socialdemokraterne party said in an interview with Jyllands Posten:
I agree that ratifying a ban will take a lot of work, but we must send a clear message that it is not okay to buy sex because of how negative it is for the women.
However, officials from the Gadejuristen (the Street Lawyer) law agency, which works with sex workers on a regular basis, said that a ban would only make the current situation worse. Lawyer Nanna Gottfredsen said on behalf of the firm:
It's completely wrong if you think that you can solve serious social issues by criminalising them. Doing this will only worsen the situation. You push the sex workers further into a grey zone. They will hide themselves and their activities and social
workers will no longer be able to contact those in need of help.
A sex meter scheme, taxing prostitutes 6 euros a night to work the streets of Bonn has raised more than 35,000 euros for public coffers in its first year.
Prostitutes working the streets have to buy themselves a ticket from the converted parking meters each night, or face a fine. In fact wardens have only handed out about 20 fines so far.
The sex tax has been accepted by the prostitutes, said city spokeswoman Elke Palm. The idea, introduced last August, was an extension of a tax imposed on brothels in the city at the beginning of 2011, Die Welt newspaper reported.
The tax scheme includes the provision of performance huts where prostitutes and their customers can conduct business. This has reduced the number of complaints from people living near the areas where prostitutes work, said Palm.
Mechthild Eickel, chairwoman of the sexworkers' association Bufas, said it was unfair that prostitutes rather than their customers should have to pay the tax. It is a pleasure for the customers. Why don't they put the money in? she asked the
Frankfurter Rundschau newspaper.
Miserable Irish politicians considering banning prostitution have been urged to back off by a leading escort agency.
MPs and senators mulling over new laws to outlaw customers paying for sex have even been invited to visit the offices of Escort Ireland. The web firm submitted a lengthy appeal to the Leinster House committee looking at law changes. Their submission
We believe there is nothing wrong with someone paying for sexual services and most clients are decent people.
We don't think adults should be prosecuted for privately paying other consenting adults for sex. Escort Ireland, which by-passes a ban on advertising sex services by operating from the UK, warned against driving the business underground. They added:
We feel the views of sex workers are the views that need to be heard more than any others.
'Justice' and Equality Committee member and Fine Gael TD David Stanton said:
The committee should be careful about what weight it affords certain submissions like this one. There are all sorts of people involved in prostitution and they have their own agendas.
Creating a legal red light district similar to Amsterdam's would cut organized crime out of the sex trade and prevent the exploitation of prostitutes, Naples Mayor Luigi De Magistris has said:
It's an experimental project, which could take off soon, the mayor said. We need to circumscribe an area in which we know the sex trade takes place. The police presence will drive organized crime out.
Prostitution is not a crime, said the mayor, a former magistrate.
A potential candidate is the eastern neighborhood of Barra, which last year offered to create a so-called love park, in which couples could park their cars undisturbed.
His proposal was welcomed by the women in his administration and in some Neapolitan female leftist circles. I've seen red light districts in Canada, Holland and many other civilized countries, Marinella De Nigris, a lawyer, told Corriere del
Mezzogiorno newspaper. I think it's a fair proposal, as long as the state upholds the rules.
A new attempt to allow Scottish councils to ban lap dancing clubs on moral grounds is to be launched.
Sandra White of the SNP previously made an attempt to shut down the clubs supported by her party's then minority administration, but was defeated by 76 votes to 45. This time, the SNP has an overall majority and their plans to give councils the powers to
refuse adult entertainment licences would almost certainly go ahead.
'Justice' Secretary Kenny MacAskill has already met Ms White to give her new proposals his blessing.
At the moment, lap dancing clubs need only a public entertainment licence. The new move would create an adult entertainment licence to be issued by councils and it would be up to them to set how many establishments would be acceptable, and that could be
none at all.
White, the MSP for Glasgow Kelvin, claims that lap dancing exploits women and has links to prostitution. The MSP said:
I feel so strongly about this and that is why I am going down this route. It would give councillors the choice to say if one lap dancing club is too many. Under this legislation, they would be able to decide that and not risk being taken to court by lap
dancing club owners. It would not be mandatory and the decision would lie with each local authority.
Scottish Tory chief whip John Lamont said the party would not be backing the latest plans and added:
Many of us took jobs in bars or shops to help pay our way through university, or other points in our lives. To shut the door on those who wish to work in such establishments is wrong. People may well have moral objections to their existence, but no
one is forcing them to go inside, or even to walk past them.
It is important that the SNP is not allowed to erode freedom of choice as yet another value they want to abolish from Scottish society.
The best way forward is to ensure tight regulation is in place so no one is being exploited and everything taking place is legal.
The US Republican Party is calling for a crackdown on pornography. As they prepare to nominate Mitt Romney as their presidential candidate for the Nov. 6 election, Republicans have added language to their official platform that anti-porn nutters said
would encourage the federal government to step up prosecution of pornography involving adults.
Current laws on all forms of pornography and obscenity need to be vigorously enforced, the platform says, according to a draft obtained by Reuters.
Republicans are planning a Tuesday vote on the document, a nonbinding statement of principles that tackles everything from monetary policy to abortion.
This appears to be the first time that the party has called for a crackdown on sexually explicit material involving adults, a multi-billion-dollar industry. Adult obscenity cases have been exceedingly rare over the past 20 years. Though the
administration of George W. Bush promised a crackdown, only the most extreme forms of pornography have been targeted.
Anti-pornography nutter Patrick Trueman said the language in the Republican platform would bolster a broader push against the type of sexually explicit material that is sold by convenience stores, by hotels via pay-per-view television programming, and
satellite and cable TV providers.
According to Trueman's group, Romney promised earlier this year that he would push for strict enforcement of obscenity laws, as well as the broader use of blocking software to screen out Internet porn.
Some of France's leading intellectuals have poured scorn on the government's goal of eradicating prostitution.
Writing in Thursday's edition of the weekly political magazine Le Nouvel Observateur, a collection of academics, artists and writers suggest efforts to get rid of the world's oldest profession are bound to fail and question whether the Socialist
administration should even be trying.
The intellectuals said any move to liberate women from sexual slavery or the clutches of organised crime would be welcome. But they argued that:
talk of abolishing prostitution was based on two debatable assumptions: that charging for sex is an affront to women's dignity and that all prostitutes are all victims of their bastard clients. A women who prostitutes herself, whether she does so
occasionally or full-time, is not necessarily a victim of male oppression.
Among the signatories to the article were philosopher Elisabeth Badinter, writer Regine Desforges and film-maker Claude Lanzmann.
The Spanish city of Barcelona will fine the customers of streetwalkers up to 1500 euros with lesser penalties for sex workers city authorities said.
The city will fine clients and people helping or promoting prostitution in the street when a new bylaw comes into force on Friday, the city hall said in a statement.
The prostitutes will face fines between 100 and 300 euros and their clients 1,000 to 1,200 euros. This rises to 750 euros for a prostitute and 1,500 for a client if soliciting takes place less than 200 metres from a school.
Sex workers will have the chance to cancel their fine if they attend social courses to get out of prostitution.
Prostitution is not illegal nationwide in Spain but was banned in Barcelona in 2006. That ban has not curbed it in Spain's second-biggest city and the new bylaw toughens the conditions, particularly the fines for customers.
A miserable campaign to criminalise men who pay for sex has launched billboards in Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Sligo and Waterford.
Denise Charlton, chief executive of the Immigrant Council of Ireland which has helped support the campaign, said all avenues need to be explored to raise awareness and force a law change. She said The story of Anna depicted on the billboards is in no
way unique and reflects a reality which exists in every county in Ireland.
The Turn Off The Red Light Campaign cited Department of Justice figures for 2011 which show that eight children were trafficked into Ireland for sexual exploitation, with 15 detected in 2010.
Charlton said: Public support is needed to bring about real change and we hope the billboard and Twitter campaign will motivate people to contact their local politicians and demand that the sex trade is shut down by making it illegal to pay for sex.
Turn Off The Red Light campaigns to end prostitution in Ireland and is backed by more than 50 organisations including trade unions, political parties and nutter groups. It wants to make Ireland's vice laws similar to Sweden where people who pay for sex
are criminalised before the prostitute.
The 2009 law criminalizing the purchase of sexual services in Norway has led to prostitutes being more dependent on pimps and encourages human trafficking, according to a new research study.
Prior to the 2009 Sex Purchase Act, Norway had one of Europe's smallest and least organized markets for prostitution. Women came voluntarily, rented apartments and sold sex from there - without the interference from any pimp.
The introduction of the law has made this process more complicated, according to a report in the Stavanger Aftenblad daily.
The women are very vulnerable towards the police and to a greater extent on the network and support that pimps can offer, said Guri Tyldum, a researcher at trades union backed Fafo to Aftenbladet.
Tyldum furthermore believes that the criminalization of prostitution has made it more attractive to traffickers. She said:
The criminalization intended to demonstrate that prostitution is not wanted in Norway. The risk is that the most dangerous and serious form of prostitution that remains.
Norway's Ministry of Justice has announced an evaluation of the sex purchase act.
Trojan's plan to distribute 10,000 free vibrators from hot dog carts ran into trouble when New York council employees shut down the Flatiron District location due to overcrowding.
There's a lot more important things the city should be worried about than a free-vibrator giveaway, complained Park Slope bar owner Melody Henry: Bloomberg doesn't want anyone to have fun. You can't have a giant soda. You can't have a vibrator.
But city council workers issued a statement explaining that the problem wasn't the sex toys; and claimed it was just that the carts just needed an official permit.
Over at Buzzfeed Shift, Amy Odell provides an eyewitness account of the Flatiron Scene. When she arrived, the carts were already empty. Trojan employees were taking down email addresses and promising to get people their free vibrators somehow, even if
they had to mail them. About 50 people were waiting in line, and when two cops showed up to deal with the crowd, they put their names down too.
An appeals court in Queensland has ruled that hotel and motel owners do not have the right to turn away escorts because of their profession.
The working girl who filed the lawsuit and who goes by the name GK sued a hotel who turned her away in 2010 after discovering his profession. Originally a local court ruled that the hotel did nothing wrong, but an appeals court has now overturned
The incident occurred at the 3.5-star Drovers Rest Motel after GK had stayed at Drovers Rest Motel 17 times over a two year period. Hotel officials turned her away after discovering that she was a sex worker.
Unfortunately for the hotel, Australia has legalized escort services and sex workers can not be discriminated against because of their job. By turning away GK the motel according to the appeals court acted in a discriminatory manner based on her
Literature lovers around the world have released a collective gasp, or perhaps a groan, at the news that the publishing phenomenon Fifty Shades of Grey has become the bestselling book in British history.
The erotic novel has sold in excess of 5.3m copies in print and ebook, more than The Highway Code , Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code, or Harry Potter
In a statement author EL James said:
My main ambition when I signed the deal with Random House was to see my books in the shops. I simply had no idea they would be so successful and this is totally unexpected. The whole process has been both extraordinary and rewarding. I couldn't be more
pleased with the sales and would like to thank everyone involved.
A new messaging device, dubbed Kissenger, lets users send kisses wirelessly to one another.
Unveiled at the Designing Interactive Systems conference in Newcastle, UK, in June, Kissenger comprises a pair of pressure-sensitive soft plastic lips which protrude through a smooth plastic casing the size of a large Easter egg.
The lips contain pressure sensors and actuators. When you kiss them, the shape changes you create are transmitted in real time over the net to a receiving Kissenger. There, the actuators reproduce the mirror image of the pressure patterns you created.
Hooman Samani of Singapore-based Lovotics developed the device. For the moment it is a prototype and Samani says it will not be commercialised until all the ethical and technical considerations are covered .
Police in major cities in the United States are criminalising women who carry a stock of condoms, making sex workers and their clients less likely to use them and increasing their risk of contracting HIV, says Human Rights Watch.
A new report compiles evidence from sex workers in four major cities -- Washington DC, New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
Interviews with more than 300 people show that those most at risk of HIV, such as sex workers and transgender women, are afraid to carry condoms in case they should be stopped and searched by police.
Prostitution is a crime in 49 states of the US. Law enforcement agencies view the possession of multiple condoms as evidence that could help a court prosecution for a breach of the law.
HRW says police are impeding efforts to prevent the spread of HIV, costing millions of dollars:
Enforcement ... must be compatible with international human rights law, and governments should ensure that police policies and practices do not conflict with equally important public health policy imperatives, including those
designed to curb the HIV epidemic.
Miserable police conducted a simultaneous raid of 13 warehouses scattered around Bankgok that contained Chinese sex toys and sex-enhancement
drugs and mobile phone equipment.
The raid began with a search of a Chinatown building where police made four arrests of people who owned or managed the warehouse.
The raid was the result of a months-long investigation by the division of intellectual property of the DSI. Police coordinated the raid by dividing police forces to make a same-day raid of all 13 warehouses containing the sex enhancement drugs,
sex toys, and smuggled mobile phone equipment.
The warehouses were scattered around Bangkok.
Those caught will be charged with violating commercial law codes, the copyright code, trade mark code, criminal laws regarding adult pornography, tariff and revenue codes, and the food and drugs code. They will also be charged with selling unregistered
drugs, and selling drugs without licences.
Members of Denmark's coalition government still plan to keep criminalisation as the backbone of any new laws regarding the nation's sex trade,
despite a report from Norway showing that making it illegal to buy sex in that country in 2009 has not resulted in a decrease the number of sex workers or an improvement in their quality of life. The report, commissioned by the city of Oslo, also
showed that since it became illegal to purchase sexual services, sex trade workers have been the victims of more violence.
The facts in the report have not deterred the parliamentary group that is in the process of proposing a similar ban here. The group remains focused on criminalising the sex for hire business.
The current situation is not tolerable, MP Pernille Vigs Bagge (Socialistisk Folkeparti) told public broadcaster DR. Denmark has become a Mecca for sex because other countries like Norway, Sweden and even Lithuania have made it illegal
to buy sex.
Miserable MP Trine Bramsen (Socialdemokraterne) maintained that criminalisation was the right thing to do:
Different studies make different claims about what women believe. This study makes a claim of its own, but of course criminalising has been beneficial in Norway because it has sent a strong signal to the people who would buy
Patrick Trueman, the head of Morality in Media, has told the conservative Daily Caller that he was quietly promised that
fighting porn will be a top priority in a Romney White House.
Trueman said he and an anti-porn prosecutor from the 1980s Justice Department, Bob Flores, met earlier this year with Alex Wong, Romney's foreign and legal policy director. Trueman said:
Wong assured us that Romney is very concerned with this, and that if he's elected these laws will be enforced. They promised to vigorously enforce federal adult obscenity laws.
Around the time Trueman says he received those assurances, Romney signed Morality in Media's anti-porn pledge along with Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum, whom he was still battling for the GOP nomination. Since then, he hasn't mentioned the issue
Romney has however promised that if elected president he would require every new computer be sold with a porn filter.
There may be another reason Romney isn't talking up porn: he needs the support of millions of primary voters who supported Ron Paul, who notably did not make opposition to sexually explicit materials a campaign plank.
Soaplands, that is, erotic bathhouses, in Japan's brothel quarters are facing falling prices amid
the ongoing economic slump.
High-end establishments that charge 50,000 - 80,000 yen [ £ 400-650, 20,000-32,000 Baht] and mid-level places, which fetch a bit less, have been hit hard by cheaper venues that began offering entry for a 'mere'
20,000 yen [ £ 160, 8,000 Baht] a few years ago. However, Shukan Post now reports on anew price point of 10,000 yen [ £ 80, 4,000 Baht].
An editor at an adult entertainment magazine explained:
With high-end soaplands not seeing any action, gals are going to work at bargain joints. In the suburbs, this phenomenon is really taking hold.
Shukan Post heads out on a fact-finding mission to the Yoshiwara brothel quarter of Tokyo. The bathhouse Puchi Royal used to require an initial outlay of 24,000 yen for 90 minutes. However, the club changed the structure of its pricing last September
such that a mere 10,000 yen would garner 35 minutes of foamy fun as delivered by the delicate digits of one of the club's working gals.
The magazine decides to take the plunge, courtesy of a 24-year-old gal. The service starts with a gentle scrub-down on a sukebe isu (literally lecher chairs, specially configured stools), continues in a bathtub, and finishes atop a bed.
Short and sweet yet when value for money is taken into consideration the service can't be beat, Shukan Post assures.
Puchi Royal's manager assures Shukan Post that the level of quality is not compromised by the low price. The service remains top of the line, he says. Yet he does admit that his club cannot make any money with rock-bottom pricing.
We are hoping to attract a lot of customers , many of whom will stay and pay for extended sessions.
The Vietnamese National Assembly recently concluded its debate on whether it made sense to detain thousands of sex workers in so-called rehabilitation
facilities where they were held without right of appeal and forced to work (including for private companies) without pay. In a vote of 70% in favor, and 30% against, the National Assembly moved to close these useless and punitive institutions.
The closure of sex worker detention centers is part of a larger Vietnamese reform to improve due process and decrease the arbitrary and prolonged nature of punishments for administrative, rather than criminal, violations.
Many actors, including Vietnam's Ministry of Justice, the Department of Social Evils Prevention (charged with addressing sex work and drug use in Vietnam), UNDP, and National Assembly members, have been involved in the reexamination of the law,
with sometimes heated debates. One female member of the National Assembly reportedly suggested that if the government was so interested in prolonged detention as a solution to sex work, then perhaps clients of sex workers should also be detained.
This suggestion was greeted with little enthusiasm from the male representatives in attendance.
Hundreds of people including sex workers protested in Paris on Saturday against plans to make paying for sex illegal, criticising a minister's
mean minded plan as counter-productive.
France's minister for women's rights, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, said she wanted to make prostitution disappear by punishing those who pay for sex, rather than the prostitutes themselves. She was backed by prominent feminists and allies in government,
but her remarks unleashed a hail of criticism from sex workers' unions, which argued that punishing clients would drive business underground, endangering prostitutes.
At Place Pigalle, one of Paris' red-light districts, dozens of sex workers chanted pro-prostitution slogans through loudspeakers and waved signs that read Penalised clients = murdered prostitutes and Sex work is work too .
Morgane Mertreuil, head of the Strass sex workers' union, told Reuters TV:
Before making public statements, she (Vallaud-Belkacem) needs to do her homework, to find out about the reality of prostitution
The struggle against forced labour is not incompatible with the idea of giving rights to people who do this job with consent.
Swedish sex workers have won the right to claim benefits, including sick days and parental leave, bringing their social security closer to that
of other taxpayers.
As long as sex workers pay their taxes, they should have the same access to sick-leave benefits and parental leave as anybody else, said Joakim Jarnryd, a director at the Stockholm-based organisation: We don't make any moral judgments.
In Sweden, selling sex is legal and sex workers can register to pay taxes using euphemisms, which qualify them for benefits. Even so, buying their services isn't legal and customers risk fines or imprisonment.
The organisation decided to extend the benefit to sex workers after examining the matter last month, Jarnryd said. But the number of people seeking the benefit will probably be low as very few taxpayers have registered as sex workers
Roy Greenslade pulls up anti-prostitution MEP on citing unsubstantiated claims hyping the scale of sex trafficking. The old chestnut of high proportion of migrant sex workers somehow implying a high proportion being trafficked.
The Home Office is set to launch a pioneering scheme to alert sex workers about people with a history of violence, including rape.
The scheme, which is being launched in Manchester, will encourage sex workers to co-ordinate with police on a national scale. It also has the wider intent of taking murderers, rapists and other violent criminals off the streets.
Sex workers will be alerted by text, email or phone app about people who have carried out attacks. Online escort agencies, street sex workers and those working in brothels will all be able to access the warnings.
The National Ugly Mugs pilot scheme is based on an Australian system. Similar schemes have been operating informally in areas of the UK but this is the first time that information will be collated nationally.
Sex workers are generally unable to report crimes directly to the police as they themselves would face police action for prostitution. So instead they can go through local sex work projects, which can pass intelligence to the police anonymously.
The scheme will be managed by the UK Network of Sex Work Projects, an umbrella organisation of campaigners and academics.
One Manchester-based street sex worker, Naomi, welcomed the initiative:
I have been working on the streets for 17 years she said. I have experienced lots of attacks, rapes and attempted kidnap. It's good to know that someone cares about what happens to us, and that sex workers will be better protected.
Merseyside police have pioneered projects working with sex workers to share intelligence about violent attacks and have an above average rate of convictions for rapes carried out against sex workers and others.
The Metropolitan police, on the other hand, has a special team, and a half million budget, to harass sex workers ahead of the Olympic Games. (In the name of preventing the mythical mass 'trafficking' that is supposed to occur at major sporting
A lap dancing club has been given permission by magistrates to perform so-called Stag on Stage
Spearmint Rhino went to court to challenge restrictions put in place by miserable Leicester City Council's new licensing regime for sexual entertainment venues in the city.
Bosses of the club appealed against city council regulations prohibiting audience participation in performances.
Julian Skeens, representing Spearmint Rhino, said the provision of Stag on Stage sessions was standard practice in the industry. He told the court the session consisted of a bridegroom-to-be taken on to stage by a lap dancer and singled out for
special attention. He said:
It's the case of a young man on his stag night who agrees to do something he's a bit embarrassed about the next day. It's almost de rigeur. It is a bit of harmless fun.
Absolutely no sexual activity. Some titillation, yes, some fun with it, we certainly hope so. That's why Spearmint Rhino is the world's largest lap-dancing empire.
Mike Broster, head of miserableness at Leicester City Council, told the court the regulations were in place to try to protect people. He said the regulations were also deigned to try to ensure there would be no sexual activity within lap dancing
Chairman of the bench Margaret Bowler said Stag on Stage sessions should be allowed as long as certain rules were adhered to. These include that the customer should be fully dressed, the lap dancer should be dressed and there should be no touching
by either party.
Miserable Philippine officials pushed for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members to take action against online pornography
Undersecretary Parisya Taradji of the Philippine Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) spouted at a recent Manila conference:
We all have crucial roles to play to save the lives of vulnerable children and women, who are often the victims of such kind of exploitation,
AT the Conference on Working Toward a Cyber Pornography and Cyber Prostitution Free Southeast Asia the DSWD claimed cyber pornography and cyber prostitution have become troublesome and ever-growing crimes.
Representatives from the ASEAN countries attended the event and compared notes about their countries' experience and initiatives in fighting cyber pornography and cyber prostitution.
Houston council voted this week to levy a $5 fee on strip club customers of the city's 30 licensed strip bars. This in addition
to the $5 fee to the state of Texas when visiting an adult venue, thanks to a law passed in 2007.
The moral tax will be ring-fenced and put towards analysing forensic evidence collected from rape victims.
Supporters of the so-called pole tax argue that lap-dancing clubs must shoulder some of the financial burden of rape investigations , on the supposed grounds that their businesses help foster misogynistic attitudes towards women, which
can lead to sexual assaults. If they were being fair about it then the tax would have been better targeted at the Catholic Church.
The morality tax was passed by 14 votes to one. The ordinance stipulates that the fee also applies to bars and night-clubs which offer one-off events that could be construed as sexually explicit, such as wet T-shirt contests or naked sushi
Albert Van Huff, a Houston lawyer who represents strip clubs, told the Journal that the tax is based on flawed logic. There is no known correlation between people going to nice, high-end gentlemen's clubs and rape, he said.