SEX WORKERS SAY NO TO THE NORDIC MODEL
On this page, find out what exactly the Nordic Model is, how is harms sex workers, and why Decriminalisation is the only option currently available that supports sex workers.
WHAT IS THE NORDIC MODEL?
There are 3 different legislative models for Sex Work: Legalisation (Germany, UK); Criminalisation (i.e. Nordic Model, Sweden) and finally Decriminalisation (New Zealand).
Currently in Germany, sex workers live in a state of semi-legality where our lives are under constant surveillance under the Prostituiertenschutzgesetz (ProstSchG, 2017). Evaluation of this law will start in 2022 and a decision will be made in 2025.
Sex Worker Exclusionary Radical Feminists (SWERFs) and other non-sex working groups are pushing for the introduction of the NORDIC Model in Germany, an “end-demand” model.
What is “end-demand”?
The criminalisation of sex workers’ clients (i.e. nordic model) is part of a legal framework that aims to eradicate sex work and trafficking by “ending demand”. This model prohibits the purchase of sexual services.
There is no current evidence to suggest that criminalising people who buy sex helps to improve the lives of sex workers (Dzubian and Stevenson, 2015). Research instead shows that criminalising clients harms sex workers and makes our lives worse, increasing stigma and pushing us underground (NSWP, 2011; NSWP, 2015; NSWP, 2017).
Decriminalisation is the only legislative model that has been proven to improve the lives of sex workers and to reduce exploitation in our industry.
Speak out AGAINST the NORDIC MODEL, speak up FOR DECRIMINALISATION.
HOW THE NORDIC MODEL HARMS SEX WORKERS:
It takes power away from sex workers in working interactions which become controlled by the needs of the criminalised clients who fear arrest.
Prevents sex workers from establishing better working conditions because their job is not considered a job anymore.
Increase of stigma that sex workers already experience.
Legitimisation and increase of negative attitude and violence against sex workers by civil society.
Increases vulnerability to exploitation as clients can no longer report suspected victims of trafficking due to fear of prosecution.
Prevents sex workers from accessing legal, social and health services (specially when migrant and/or BPOC and/or LGBT).
Makes it impossible to separate sex workers and victims of trafficking.
Generates impunity for those who commit crimes against sex workers.
Decriminalising sex work helps guarantee sex workers’ rights to participate in the debates where our living and working conditions are discussed and decided. We become part of the conversation and can tell you what we need.
Decrease in STIs, including an enormous reduction in HIV transmission because condoms can no longer be used as evidence of a crime (WHO; AMNESTY INT.).
Governments must provide access to health services to all sex workers and end the mandatory registration and sexual health testing for sex workers.
When sex work is recognised as work, it allows us to refer to labour regulations. Enabling us to report abuses, organise against precarious working conditions and for migrants to apply for work permits or visas for example.
Sex workers need to be allowed to work in a supportive environment, which allows for the creation of a community of peers.
Decriminalisation would allow us to take legal action in cases of harassment or violence.
It allows for further creation of networks and community such as workers unions.