‘Selling Sex’ – Instead of Criminalising it, Why not License it?

Instead of criminalising the ‘selling of sex’ why not LICENSE and tax it, in a similar way to that taxi drivers? That way it could be made compulsory for sex workers to go in person to get their license, taking photo id to prove who they are. Those issuing the license could be trained to probe for evidence that those sex workers seeking a license are being coerced or trafficked and to spot signs of such.

Should any sex worker reveal that they have been coerced or trafficked into it, they can then be offered the support necessary to escape their infliction. At the same time, those sex workers who’ve come to get or renew their license could also get health checks and if need be, get treated for STIs.

Wouldn’t this be a means that enables those who legitimately want to ‘sell sex’, as a service, to do so, while paying tax, so contributing to society? Would it not make ‘selling sex’ safer, help prevent people being coerced or trafficked into ‘selling sex’, and should the latter prove to be the case, help these people escape such abuse?

This doesn’t mean we have to agree with ‘prostitution’ or the ‘selling of sex’ but it is going to continue to take place, anyway! Criminalising it, in any way, will only drive it further below ground, put those who ‘sell sex’ lives at risk and open the floodgates to trafficking and coercion.

I would like to hear what others think – whether that be someone who opposes the ‘selling of sex’ and thinks it should be criminalised, ‘sell sex’ as a service, have been trafficked or coerced into it, buy sex, responsible for legislating for or against it or anyone else with something to say on the matter.



  1. April 13, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    Reblogged this on justiceforkevinandjenveybaylis.

  2. April 13, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    will they be allowed to talk openly about their trafficking or not

    • gaeliccraic said,

      April 13, 2014 at 11:32 pm

      I think there is more of a chance of their trafficking coming to light this way than the way things are at present, especially as a sex worker will have to come in person every year to renew license and if they are being physically abused as well as they usually are bruising etc likely to be visible. In cases like that of Baylis family I feel would be hard to ensure the safety of those trafficked as they were not technically sold into prostitution in the usual sense of the word but more abducted and raped by one perpetrator. Have you an answer to how we help people who’ve been trafficked and prevent it from happening?

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