Decriminalizing Sex Work in NY is a Human Rights Imperative

From left: Nina Luo from VOCAL-NY, TS Candy from DecrimNY, Jared Trujillo from the Legal Aid Society, Jessica Raven from DecrimNY, State Senator Julia Salazar and Assemblymember Yuh-Line Niou.

A standing room only crowd gathered in the auditorium of The LGBT Center (208 W. 13th St.) on Mon., Sept. 16, for “Stop Violence in the Sex Trades Act” teach-in. Sex work advocates joined elected officials, to discuss S6419/A8230, the country’s first legislation introduced to decriminalize the sex trade.

“We cut away all parts of the law dealing with prostitution, and what remains are the provisions that outlaw patronizing a minor—the younger the person, the more serious the offense,” said New York State Assemblymember Richard Gottfried, the bill’s co-sponsor in the House. “The trafficking parts regarding coercion would remain, with hefty penalties. The language also outlaws sex work on or adjacent to a school. And some civil law provisions would remain.”

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