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It appears that while dreary British politicians impose dangerous laws based on moral presumptions compounded by prejudiced ignorance about sex workers and their labour the French are showing signs of taking a different direction.
France and Paris in particular were once famous for having some of the most glamorous bordellos in the world. In a pique of moral panic after the war France closed the doors of its whore houses and consequently drove the industry underground. The result predictably was that sex workers found themselves working in dangerous conditions, fearful of the police who should in any civilised state be there to protect all of its subjects with out prejudice.
There are of course dangers in states becoming too zealous in licensing the sex industry. The tendency has been in some states such as Holland for example for governments to impose regulations that do not reflect the nature of the industry that they wish to regulate. The result has been the creation of legal and illegal markets which simply exacerbates perceived issues of exploitation with in the industry which allows the moralists to collect more biased misinformation to fuel their dangerous arguments that endanger sex workers lives.
The push for this debate to at least to be taking place appears to be led by opinion polls that show that the French public support legalisation. Similar opinion polls in the UK also show that the British public also support legalisation. Sadly the present labour government chose to ignore both the British public and the collected factual evidence collated by numerous academics over decades of research. The result was the policing and crime bill previously discussed on this blog.
It will be interesting to see how these proposals are received by the French government and if they are acted upon. If bordellos once more become part of Parisian and French life it can only be positive (depending upon the wording of any legislation) both for French sex workers and for the struggle for sex workers rights here in the UK.