In Merseyside, Police have worked in partnership with sex worker organisations to catch serial rapists and declared all crimes against sex workers to be a hate crime. The police have now have achieved a 67% conviction rate for rape against sexworkers – the national average is just 6%. Article here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2010/dec/22/merseyside-police-sex-workers-protect
After Jemima (@itsjustahobby) over at itsjustahobby.wordpress.com sent Ruth Jacobs (@RuthFJacobs) who blogs at soul-destruction.com the link to the article, Ruth has got an MP on board with this sex worker collaboration model. Ruth has asked me to work with her to get this model implemented in every police force across the UK.
Ruth’s focus – in her own words – has always been to protect women in prostitution, and since finding out about Merseyside she has decided that focussing her efforts in implementing this across the UK is the best way to realise this goal. I think that whether you’re a sex worker or an abolitionist, you can support this collaboration model. It is possible for us to work together on this while each side continues to fight the Nordic model and push for it respectively. Ruth will be using the term “prostitution” in her blog post, and I’ll be calling it “sex work”, and that doesn’t matter. We plan on creating a blog solely about the Merseyside/Sex worker collaboration/Hate Crime model. This site will further our cause and will be a place where both sex workers and abolitionists can feel at home, and the rest of sex work politics are put aside.
We’re also considering creating a petition. While crimes against sex workers are not a hate crime in national law, Merseyside Police have designated these as hate crimes and hate crimes should be dealt with in a standard way across all police forces. With the single police force coming soon in Scotland, this collaboration/hate crime model might be relatively easy to implement in Scotland.
I hope that you all choose to support me and Ruth in this. A truce in this matter should be workable, even if you’re against abolitionists about every other issue.