Actors call on Amnesty to reject plans backing decriminalisation of sex trade

(originally published in Guardian on July 28th)

A host of Hollywood stars, including Oscar-winning actors Meryl Streep, Kate Winslet and Emma Thompson, have lent their support to a campaign demanding that Amnesty International reject a proposal to endorse the decriminalisation of the sex trade.

The global human rights group is set to review an internal policy document on sex work at a meeting in Dublin next month, according to the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW).

If the policy is adopted, Amnesty would “in effect advocate the legalisation of pimping, brothel owning and sex buying – the pillars of a $99bn global sex industry“, CATW said.

Over 3,000 members of the public have signed the petition since it was posted on change.org last week, and it has been endorsed in a letter by women’s rights campaigners, former workers in the sex trade, and celebrities such as actors Emily Blunt, Lena Dunham and Anne Hathaway.

The letter, addressed to Amnesty’s secretary general, Salil Shetty; executive director Steven Hawkins, and the board of directors, says: “Every day, we combat male access to women’s bodies through power and control, from female genital mutilation to forced marriage; from domestic violence to violation of reproductive rights. The exchange of money for such access does not eliminate the violence women face in the sex trade …

 

Read more here …

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