Harlots Parlour

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@stevegayescort Steve has asked Harlots to reblog his piece on why UK sex workers and their clients and allies should vote Brexit (leave the European Union.) The British people vote on this important referendum on the 23rd of June, just a few days from now. The result could affect British sex workers. I’m sure Steve will be delighted to read comments and opinions. Vicky S.

You can read Steve’s blog HERE


Yes, we’re presently involved in a referendum on membership of the EU (European Union). It is probably one of the most important decisions that the people of the United Kingdom will have to make because the result genuinely influences what sort of Britain we want not just for our future but for our children and for future generations.

For those outside of the United Kingdom, a sovereign country made up of the three constituent countries of England, Scotland and Wales along with the province of Northern Ireland, here is a brief history of our relationship with the EU. Approximately forty years ago the British people had a referendum on whether it should join in what was then described as a Common market, allowing free trade and travel within a small group of European countries, mainly Northern Europe, all sharing a fairly similar culture and who were economically compatable. Over this time the Common Market has become the European Union, incorporating far more countries, often with very diverse cultures and very different economies. What was once a free trading block of independent nations has become a project to create a new country called Europe with it’s own government which creates laws and issues edicts that member states have to accept even though their citizens have no democratic recourse to hold those bureaucrats accountable. These directives cover trade deals, business legislation, workers rights as well as family and civil rights. The EU has also created a single currency called the Euro which means that fiscal policy for the Eurozone is dictated by the EU bureaucracy in Brussels as well as Strasbourg and an essential component of the ideology which drives the EU is the open borders and free movement of people, which has raised the sphectre of right and left wing nationalism, just as poorer Southern Europeans have migrated in huge numbers to the wealthier north, most notibly the UK. The UK government, fortunately, refused to join the Euro when it was created and retained the British Pound and subsequently, despite the warning of many leading economic forecasters and theorists who had wanted the UK to join the euro, the UK has prospered while the Eurozone had lurched from financial crisis to crisis.

The EU referendum has consequences for British sex workers, our allies and our clients. The main reason, directly reated to sex work, is that the EU bureaucracy has adopted aspects of radical feminist ideology as a basis for much of its rhetoric on women’s rights and equality. The powerful EWL (European Women’s Lobby) has, under the emotionalised heading of “Violence Against Women, influenced policies adopted by the EU in its response to human trafficking and slavery and of course prostitution, which is discussed using the emotionalised term “Prostituted Women”.

This EWL had successfully pushed for the EU Parliament to adopt a resolution in favour of the Nordic Model which criminalises the purchase of sex. The resolution was passed 343 votes for, 139 against and 105 abstentions.

The EU Parliament, at present, can only recommend policy on prostitution to its members states. This recommendation and more importantly the politics behind it however, is influencing member states in their polices toward sex work. Germany has adopted a more aggressive attitude toward sex workers under the guise of stopping exploitation and trafficking, similarly in Amsterdam the authorities have increased restrictions on sex workers, increasing the age at which a sex worker can legally work and closing down windows, thus taking a much more aggressive stance toward brothels. In England and Wales the pressure is growing for the Nordic Model to be adopted, it has already been adopted in Northern Ireland and at the moment Scotland is, once again, looking at either the Nordic Model or alternatively decriminalisation. The problem for UK sex workers is the ideology which has motivated the EU from its incepton, which has been to push for ever greater integration and to create a new United States of Europe, that is in reality a new country. The intention is that this new country be governed from Brussels and Strasbourg. There are already plans for the EU bureaucracy to collect NI (national insurance) contributions and tax, to create and run a EU army and to slowly work toward ever greater union, to create a more centralised and powerful government for all of Europe. This push for ever greater integration is a serious threat to British sex workers, our clients and allies because an increasingly powerful and centralised EU, heavily influenced by the EWL, may soon assume the power to legislate on issues, like prostituion and….. not just advise.

Presently we have a democratically accountable government in the UK that retains for the moment a semblance of sovereignty. If the referendum results in the UK remaining within the EU there will be an increased pressure for ever greater integration which means that British sex workers could face the prospect of legislation from Europe being imposed with no redress throughout the member countries or member states as they may be in twenty years time. EU policies are not decided by a democratically accountable parliament but by an unelected and unaccountable committee, influenced by powerful pressure groups such as the EWL. The EU parliament simply exists to be a rubber-stamp for EU law.

Our democracy is not perfect, but decisions are made by elected politicians, in the interests of the UK and not a whole continent of diverse cultures, economies and politics. I understand that our parliament is frustrating at times to work with but we can change governments and laws created by one government can be amended and changed by another. We do this by directly lobbing our own MPs, by telling them to their face that they are wrong, but how can we do that with a secret committee based in Brussels? I urge sex workers to consider this very carefully when they decide on their vote in this referendum.

I would URGE British sex workers and allies to vote to leave the EU and to continue to lobby our own democratically elected and democratically accountable politicians for decriminalisation.


  1. korhomme
    1 June, 2016

    Originally, there was England, then England and Wales which you might call Britain. When the Scots were pressurised to join England, the island became Great Britain. When Ireland, technically a separate kingdom, was bullied and bribed into joining Great Britain, the country became the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. When what became the Republic of Ireland gained a form of independence, the country became the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, as it says on passports to this day.

    N Ireland is not a province of the UK, it is a constituent part. The province is the province of Ulster which is often taken as synonymous, though Ulster really includes three further Irish counties.

    As for democratic government in the UK or GB, the House of Lords has 800+ unelected members, including descendants of royal bastards and other hereditary peers, assorted bishops from the church of England (but not the churches of Scotland, Wales or N Ireland) etc. Some of these unelected people are members of the government.

    • Steve
      2 June, 2016

      Northern Ireland has never been a country in it’s own right and is therefore a province of the United Kingdom. I can find you many examples which will back up my claim. You obviously like to nit pick at details rather than look at the bigger picture.

      I offered a very simplified version of what constitutes the UK, knowing that readers of Harlots are international. I was not offering a history lesson and certainly not your biased appraisal of history.

      The House of Lords is a second chamber, it does not decide law, simply offers advice and rarely is able to stop any decision by elected members of the house commons from becoming law.

      Only a small number of the Lords is hereditary, the rest being nominees. The Bishops I agree are a remnant of history.

      Regardless Sex workers in England and Wales can and do lobby directly democratically elected members and have a greater chance of influencing legislation than a non elected committee in Brussels heavily influence by EWL.

      • korhomme
        2 June, 2016

        Steve, despite what I say, I’m on your sex worker side.

        I was brought up in N Ireland, and still live here. The version of history that we were taught was ‘English’ history, the history that is written by the victors. But now I see just how partisan this was.

        N Ireland isn’t and never was a province of the UK. N Ireland is six of the nine counties of the Province of Ulster, an historical, archaic (and English) administrative division of the island of Ireland.

        The criminal law is much the same as the common law system in England; but property law is quite different. Conacre has no meaning in English law. N Ireland has an entirely separate jurisdiction with differing laws from England; is this not a definition of a ‘country’?

        If I nitpick, it is because if I see errors of fact, then I look further for other errors. My point about the House of Lords is that it is just as undemocratic as some of the European institutions. And, the UK executive and judiciary are predominantly drawn from the 7% who went to ‘public’ schools; how is this democratic?

        I do disagree with much of your analysis. The EU is by no means perfect, much isn’t democratic, but neither are the UK (=English) bodies. I find the sovereignty argument weak; the UK (=Great Britain = England) is now a second rate power in the world – the days of Empire are long gone, we are just one amongst many, we are not special. I don’t see that our presence or absence from the EU will make any difference to the laws around sex work. As you note, N Ireland introduced the Nordic model a year and a day ago; this ridiculous decision had much more to do with our then ruling theocracy than it had to do with Europe. Further, in the event of a Brexit, the UK will still have to pay to be a member of the free trade area.

        There’s another problem specific to N Ireland; this part of the UK has a land border with another EU member, the Republic of Ireland. What happens in the event of Brexit? Will there be a ‘hard’ land border, like the one Trump wants between the US and Mexico? Or will the border be at the port of entry to Great Britain: will people travelling between one part of the UK (NI) have to show proof of nationality – passports – to gain entry to another (GB)? Will we see border camps, as at Calais, in Ireland? And just to confuse this even more, there is a ‘Common Travel Area’ between the UK and the Republic, a passport-free travel area.

  2. Ben
    2 June, 2016

    So, rather than push for change in EU policy and try to improve things for prostitutes across Europe, your answer is to turn your back on our working brothers and sisters and let them fend for themselves?

    That, to me, is everything that is wrong with the British today.

    There’s no reason to belive that leaving the EU will improve policy for sex workers in the UK, and there’s every reason to believe that a damaged economy will lead to lower incomes for the men and women working here.

    • Steve
      2 June, 2016

      Sex work is varied and subjective to a variety of cultural and legal influences across Europe and the world.

      It is up to each sovereign nation to decide on law and for sex workers to argue specifically for laws that best suit their needs.

      Britain leaving the EU in no way affects the ability of British sex workers to work with allies around the world to win the most effective legislation for each sovereign nations peculiar circumstances.

  3. Rich
    26 July, 2016

    I do agree with you completely. The globalists in the EU have been pro-Nordic model which is why I toasted the Brexit. This is a step toward the ideal that sex work is a human right and so is having the right to purchase the services of a sex worker. I wish I could live old enough to see this truly become a global ideal but I live in the US which won’t probably come to this conclusion for the next 70 years.

  4. oscpolk@gmail.com
    21 August, 2016

    I honestly don’t think Brexit will have any real impact on British sex workers. Sex is one of the few services that can remain national and still have a thriving market. The lowered value of the pound should also attract more of a tourist trade which should help considerably.

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This entry was posted on 1 June, 2016 by in Uncategorized.
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