The Sex Industry Blog – For Media Enquiries please call us on 020 7175 0180 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
A new post by a new author for Harlots Parlour. Shelly Stoops is the ISVA officer working specifically with sex workers in Liverpool. Shelly has written an introduction to this article from Bristol on the conviction of a man who assaulted and raped a pregnant sex worker.
Despite a cultural and societal denial of street sex workers as ‘worthy’ victims and arguments that sex workers ‘cannot be raped’, ‘are unreliable witnesses’ and ‘shouldn’t be out there in the first place’ there are pockets of good practice around the UK where sex workers are treated with equity and are receiving the full protection of law enforcement.
Whilst the popular perception exists that sex workers will not come forward if they are victims of rape and sexual assault has allowed offenders to prey on these clients unchecked, the rising statistics prove this not to be so. Many are now able, thanks to partnership work between police forces, to come forward and report safe in the knowledge that their experience is what matters most, not their involvement in the sex industry.
This case in Bristol shows that when police forces work collaboratively with sex work support projects in a pragmatic, victim focused way-great things can be achieved. Thanks to the bravery of this woman and the support she received, another dangerous predator is behind bars.
The media reportage was sensitive too and sensitive rather than sensationalist press will also send a clear message to would be offenders-do not think you will get away with it, these offences can no longer be carried out with impunity.
Violence against sex workers must stop ‘full stop’.