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There were a couple of debates on Irish TV. As usual on both debates the voice of the consenting sex-work was ignored. The TV3 Vincent Browne whitewash had the Ruhama agency along with their ex sex-worker, her name was Mary. Mary has been used by the Ruhama agency on a number of occasions though using several different names. So far she has been identified in media with 4 different names. What happened to her is a crime, and the biggest crime was committed by her partner who forced her to work, she did need help.
Why was the participation in the program of active sex-workers denied? There were sex-workers who contacted Vincent Browne asking to appear on this program.
Another sex-work program also appeared on feck.tv. Again two abolitionists (Mary Crilly of Cork Sexual Violence Centre, and Catherine Clancy of Labour Party Councillor on Cork City Council) presenting their case, and a representative (Keith Dunne) of SWAI on the phone to argue against. Again no actual sex workers represented. I have placed a youtube link to this program, watch it and see how the arguments from the abolitionists are so moralistic, and when they are called out on the statistics, they revert to accusing SWAI of being academic and ignoring the human issues and that the prostitute is ‘someone daughters’. The host (David O Connor) of the show though did argue and call out the abolitionists on a number of occasions, but as usual lack of subject knowledge was telling. Nobody confronted the abolitionists on the entry age of prostitution, or why would criminalisation of sex-work reduce the demand for under aged trafficked girls where this abusive market is already criminal, and would land the purchaser in jail anyway.
A final program on RTE with Teresa Whitaker from SWAI, and Denise Charlton from the Immigrant Council. Two sex-workers were interviewed, one who enjoys her work, and a trafficked women. Denise Charlton from TORL is challenged at the end on her statistics and views of the success of the Nordic model. Denise also used figures from the ILO on trafficking, and this was turned back on her in that the ILO and UN advocate total decriminalisation as in New Zealand. In response TORL ignored the criticism and reiterated the lies in a louder voice at the end of the show. Say the lie again, louder and more stridently and then it must be true. I have respect for viewers, and I believe many will see she did not answer the questions or criticism