AWAN takes on 'legal brothels' project

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martin dufresne
AWAN takes on 'legal brothels' project

 

martin dufresne

December 6, 2007

Aboriginal Women's Action Network

As Aboriginal women on occupied Coast Salish Territory, we, the Aboriginal Women's Action Network (AWAN) implore you to pay attention to the voices of Aboriginal women and women's groups who are speaking out in the interest of our sisters, our daughters, our friends and all women whose voices have not been heard in the recent media discussion on prostitution and legalized brothels for the 2010 Olympics.

We, the Aboriginal Women’s Action Network, speak especially in the interests of the most vulnerable women - street prostitutes, of which a significant number are young Aboriginal women and girls. We have a long, multi-generational history of colonization, marginalization, and displacement from our Homelands, and rampant abuses that has forced many of our sisters into prostitution. Aboriginal women are often either forced into prostitution, trafficked into prostitution or are facing that possibility. Given that the average age at which girls enter prostitution is fourteen, the majority with a history of unspeakable abuses, we are also speaking out for the Aboriginal children who are targeted by johns and pimps. Aboriginal girls are hunted down and prostituted, and the perpetrators go uncharged with child sexual assault and child rape. These predators, pervasive in our society, roam with impunity in our streets and take advantage of those Aboriginal children with the least protection. While we are speaking out for the women in the downtown eastside of Vancouver, we include women from First Nations Reserves, and other Aboriginal communities, most of whom have few resources and limited choices. We include them because AWAN members also originate from those communities, and AWAN members interact regularly with Native women from these communities.

The Aboriginal Women's Action Network opposes the legalization of prostitution, and any state regulation of prostitution that entrenches Aboriginal women and children in the so-called "sex trade." We hold that legalizing prostitution in Vancouver will not make it safer for those prostituted, but will merely increase their numbers. Contrary to current media coverage of the issue, the available evidence suggests that it would in fact be harmful, would expand prostitution and would promote trafficking, and would only serve to make prostitution safer and more profitable for the men who exploit and harm prostituted women and children. Although many well-meaning people think that decriminalization simply means protecting prostituted women from arrest, it also refers, dangerously, to the decriminalization of johns and pimps. In this way prostitution is normalized, johns multiply, and pimps and traffickers become legitimated entrepreneurs. Say "No" to this lack of concern for marginalized women and children, who in this industry are expected to serve simply as objects of consumption! The Aboriginal Women's Action Network opposes the legalization of brothels for the 2010 Olympics. We refuse to be commodities in the so-called "sex industry" or offer up our sisters and daughters to be used as disposable objects for sex tourists.

A harm-reduction model that claims to help prostituted women by moving them indoors to legal brothels, not only would not reduce the harm to them, but would disguise the real issues. There is no evidence that indoor prostitution is safer for the women involved. Rather, it is just as violent and traumatic. Prostitution is inherently violent, merely an extension of the violence that most prostituted women experience as children. We should aim not merely to reduce this harm, as if it is a necessary evil and/or inescapable, but strive to eliminate it altogether. Those promoting prostitution rarely address class, race, or ethnicity as factors that make women even more vulnerable. A treatise can be written about Aboriginal women’s vulnerability based on race, socio-economic status and gender but suffice it to say that we are very over-represented in street-level prostitution. There may even be a class bias behind the belief that street prostitution is far worse than indoor forms. It is not the street per se or the laws for that matter, which are the source of the problem, but prostitution itself which depends on a sub-class of women or a degraded caste to be exploited. A major factor contributing to the absence of attention given to the women who have gone missing women in Vancouver is the lack of police response, and the insidious societal belief that these women were not worthy of protection, a message that is explicitly conveyed to the johns, giving them the go-ahead to act toward these women with impunity. If we want to protect the most vulnerable women, we could start by decriminalizing prostituted women, not the men who harm them. Although it is not mentioned in the local news, the Swedish model of dealing with prostitution provides an example we should seriously consider. It criminalizes only the buying of sex, not the selling, targeting the customer, pimp, procurer, and trafficker, rather than the prostituted woman, and provides an array of social services to aid women to leave prostitution. Given that the vast majority of prostituted women wish to leave prostitution, we should focus on finding ways to help them to do that rather than entrenching them further into prostitution by legalizing and institutionalizing it. Here in Vancouver, if we are to help those most in need, young Aboriginal women, it would help to think more long-term, to focus on healing and prevention. Let's not get tricked into a supposed fix which is not even a band-aid, but only deepens the wounds.

AWAN demands that Aboriginal women have the opportunity to raise our families within our Traditional values of having a respected position for women and children in our societies. The single-most effective way of achieving that goal is empowering and resourcing Aboriginal women’s groups, such as AWAN, so that we can organize, engage with other sectors of society and speak with our own voices. We have a great deal of certainty that organized Aboriginal women’s voices would be calling for "Exiting" programs and services, support for Aboriginal women and children, and an end to forced prostitution. Let Vancouver enter into the 2010 Olympics without wearing the black-eye of decriminalized prostitution and legalized brothels that drive Aboriginal women further down the Human Rights ladder of Canadian and Vancouver society.

For further information, please contact AWAN spokesperson, Laura Holland at (604) 767-5564.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
MORE: A strong interview with Theresa Ducharme of the Native Women's Association of Canada - where she discusses the impact of the Robert Pickton murders and trial on the Native women's community - can be downloaded from
the [url=http://www.ckut.ca/nsn/#ckut.ca/nsn]Native Solidarity News[/url] website.

[url=http://missingwomen.blogspot.com/2007/03/native-women-run-higher-risk-of... info[/url]

[ 12 December 2007: Message edited by: martin dufresne ]

martin dufresne

NO Legal Brothel in Vancouver

Statement by Ex-Prostitutes Against Legislated Sexual Servitude

We urge you to oppose any attempt to introduce a legal brothel in Vancouver.

As women who have been prostituted in Vancouver and in the light of these facts :

• That current discourse on prostitution would have the public believe that it is normal work that simply needs to be better regulated
• That there is currently a proposal to open a legal brothel in Vancouver
• That this proposal is said to speak for current and former prostitutes of Vancouver
• That this proposal promises to make the lives of prostituted women “safer” at best
• That none of us have ever met a prostituted woman who would not leave the “trade” if she had a real chance to do so
• That we are women who have been abused on Canadian soil, by Canadian men while all levels of our Government did nothing to intervene.
• That some members of parliament are now advocating to legalize that abuse.

We want you to know :

We are women who have been harmed by prostitution. We believe that no amount of changing the conditions or the locations in which we were prostituted could ever have significantly reduced that harm.

We experience the normalizing of that harm by calling it “work” insulting at best.

It matters very little to us whether we were prostituted on the streets or in the tolerated indoor venues and escort agencies of Vancouver. Our memories are not of the locations but of the men who consistently acted as though we were not quite human. We remember the countless other men and women who daily averted their eyes. We remember the utter lack of services or options that made any sense and the blatant denial of access to any kind of help or justice. We remember the need to “dumb down” our sense of entitlement to a better life so we could bear the one we were in. And we remember too well the numbing despair that came when we finally lost faith that there existed in this world anything decent and good.

We oppose any measure that would put more power in the hands of the men who abused us by telling them that they are legally entitled to do so. This proposal does not speak for us, would not have affected our level of safety in a way that matters, and would not have spared us the harm that is inherent in prostitution.

We are not impressed with lip service proposals to make prostituted women’s lives “safer”. Safer is not good enough. We consider it a violation of our human rights that we were abandoned to years of situations that fit the definition of sexual assault under current law. But not only is this violence not recorded, not prosecuted, not punished. We are now being told that we chose it.

We believe that, where there is public and political will, lives can be changed for the better. We do not believe the lie that prostitution is inevitable. We believe it can be abolished.

As hosts of the 2010 games, we want our city, our home, to refuse to take part in the global flesh market that is sex tourism and send a message to the world that women will not be sold in Vancouver.

We believe that every sexually exploited woman represents a life wasted. We are greatly saddened for the lives of women lost in prostitution, as well as the loss of the sum of the contributions that countless women still living would have made had they not been abandoned to sexual slavery.

We urge you all to refuse to believe that prostitution is normal or that is an equal exchange ”between two consenting adults”.

We urge you to oppose any attempt to introduce a legal brothel in Vancouver.

X-PALSS (Ex-Prostitutes Against Legislated Sexual Servitude), Vancouver, B.C.

E-Mail : [email][email protected][/email]

jester

Prostitution should be a crime. A crime perpetrated against women by both the pimps and the johns.

Legalising prostitution merely puts those who profit -both financially and sexually- from prostitution beyond the reach of the law and creates one more hurdle to stopping abuse of women.

sknguy

In order to legalize prostitution you'd have to change the Criminal Code of Canada. Vancouver, in order to dress up it's civic pride through a change to the Criminal Code of Canada, would need the acquiescence of Canada. I just don't see this happening anytime soon. Wow, is this another Olympic size bright idea.

martin dufresne

Look again sknguy... Pimps are currently challenging Canda's right to hinder their profits by going to Court in Ontario and B.C.

[url=http://www.thestar.com/News/article/194455]Charter challenge on prostitution filed[/url]

sknguy

I used to think that this notion of supporting such legalization would be a productive measure. But I've grown very weary of the idea, simply because of the many consequences, socialy, of institutionalizing the practice.

That's an interesting arguement that the legal team Osgood had developed. It's interesting, but are it's consequences worth it's limited benefit?

zazzo

This is the first time that I have read a posting in Rabble that has gotten me seriously riled up. I am just sick.
Why is this post in the Aboriginal issues and culture section? It seems to me that this would more properly belong in the feminist section. Not all prostitutes are Aboriginal, and I think that this issues affects all women who are engaged in this. I am glad that AWAN has come forward to talk about why legalization of prostitution is not a good thing for women, whether they are Aboriginal or not.

[ 14 December 2007: Message edited by: zazzo ]

[ 14 December 2007: Message edited by: zazzo ]

martin dufresne

Hi Zazzo,
I am the one who posted the AWAN statement here, at the same time that I put it up in the Feminism section, as you suggest. A moderator decided not to run two threads concurrently and to let discussion occur here, which seems to make sense, given AWAN's nature.
I don't see any suggestion in the first post that all prostitutes are Aboriginal. Yet the fact that the women of AWAN and of NWAC ('Sisters in Spirit' Project) are taking stands on this issue seems central, given the impact of racialization/extreme poverty/prostitution on Aboriginal communities and the fact that Aboriginal women have been at the forefront of organizing against it.
There was a lengthy interview with NWAC's Teresa Ducharme on the Native Solidarity News radio program earlier this week - that will be carried nationally - and I know that the issue is raising considerable attention in Quebec's Aboriginal women's community these days.

The second post in this thread quotes a second statement - from ex-prostituted women, with no explicit reference to Aboriginal issues. Yes, this could be posted on the Feminism forum, although it is clearly also relevant here, adding experiential value to the first Statement.
Isn't it significant that it is Aboriginal women who have taken the lead in opposing the pimps' and brothel-owners' lobby, who seems to care very little for the welfare of women prostituted on the street? The poorest of women - many of them Aboriginal - are slated to suffer additional repression with the legitimation of brothels that will give the State one more excuse to harass women driven to situations of survival prostitution - women that will never be hired by those brothels and that would not want to!

In Solidarity against All Oppressions

[url=http://sisyphe.org/article.php3?id_article=2825]X-PALSS - Calling Former Sex Trade Workers[/url]

[ 14 December 2007: Message edited by: martin dufresne ]

oldgoat

quote:


Why is this post in the Aboriginal issues and culture section? It seems to me that this would more properly belong in the feminist section.

That was a coin toss I guess you lost.

zazzo

Martin, I am sorry to say that I cannot accept your rationale for putting this on the Aboriginal issues forum. You mention “the impact of impact of racialization/extreme poverty/ prostitution on Aboriginal communities”. If this is a racialized issue, then perhaps it should be posted in the anti-racism forum.

I am just weary of having to hear about Aboriginal women being portrayed as prostitutes. Yes, it is true that many prostitutes are Aboriginal, and, of course, it would be our women’s organizations that are at the forefront in working for these women. But the fact is, is that these women are not prostitutes because they are Aboriginal, therefore to my mind, it is not an Aboriginal issue. It is a women’s issue, and therefore should have been posted to the feminist forum. It is there, that a good discussion could have occurred, and perhaps the feminists, both men and women, would have been able to learn something from the Aboriginal women who are working on this issue.

In dealing with issues that impact on our people, there should always be a certain clarity of thought, simply because issues are often themselves clouded by assumptions that could be considered racist by some of us who have lived this life. By that I mean, the colonialist, sometime racist mentality that we have to struggle against.

I am not as riled up as I was earlier, and now that I think of it, I am not surprised that it was posted here. I just expected better from Rabble.

I just reread the three previous posts on this issue, (aside from yours) and none of them refer to anything that could be considered an Aboriginal issue. The posts refer to the issue, and it could have been about any women, regardless of her race, ethnic origin, or whatever.

PS to oldgoat, I find your remark rather cavalier, as this is an issue that concerns those who care about social justice. Prostitution is an issue that not only concerns women, but also men who engage in the buying of these services. It has been acknowledged that there is an element of violence around the whole issue, as indicated in the first posting by Martin, which appears to be a press release from AWAN.

[ 14 December 2007: Message edited by: zazzo ]

Makwa Makwa's picture

Z, I think you have a valid point. It is often disheartening to see all FN issues reduced to social conflict issues. I think as the Aboriginal Women's Action Network has explicitely identified "the multi-generational history of colonization, marginalization, and displacement from our Homelands, and rampant abuses that has forced many of our sisters into prostitution" as their analytical point of reference, I see no problem in discussing the issue within the aboriginal issues area. I would hope however, that issues related to the occupation of Turtle Island remain as a central point of analysis.

Bacchus

quote:


In order to legalize prostitution you'd have to change the Criminal Code of Canada.

Umm no. prostitution IS legal, soliciting in public is not.

Maysie Maysie's picture

Hi Zazzo, thanks for your comments and your posts in this thread. I have a few ideas about what's going on here.

First, martin started two threads simultaneously, in the feminism forum and here.

Second, this thread has gone in the direction it has because until recently you have been the only woman to comment on the topic. That in itself is interesting but not particularly surprising to me.

Third, the feminist forum doesn't always do well with issues that are beyond the mainstay of white women's feminism. I understand the reasoning, if not the chosen wording, of why oldgoat chose to leave this thread open here, since the statement in the OP was made by an Aboriginal women's group. The many links made by the women of AWAN to colonialism and ongoing abuse in Canada has been uncommented by the posters to date, again, not surprising given that there have been no other women's voices until you began posting, zazzo. This makes me wonder if the male posters read and understood the significance of hearing these voices, in this context.

Frankly, I think a very similar discussion would have likely gone the same way if the feminism thread had been the one that stayed open. I think the possibility of pushing the analysis a little further, as Makwa has indicated, is a bit more possible in this forum.

AfroHealer

Issues that affect a disproportional percentage of Aboriginal women, is IMHO appropriate to be discussed in the Aboriginal issues forum.

Especially since the majority White feminist movement, tends to ignore the issues of colonialism, race & whitesupremacy, that combine to continue the abuse of our sisters.

These are issues of child-abuse, the history of abusing first nations kids, is long and shameful, and unfortunately has not ended.

I don't believe there is anything in the two press releases that would negatively paint all Aboriginals as prostitutes.

I'm hopping that the discussion here, would actually deal with the underlining root issues, that lead to abuse of Aboriginal Women in this country .
My fingers are still crossed

remind remind's picture

quote:


Originally posted by bigcitygal:
[b]this thread has gone in the direction it has because until recently you have been the only woman to comment on the topic. That in itself is interesting but not particularly surprising to me. [/b]

I have not entered into this discussion because of where it is located.

As makwa stated:

quote:

I would hope however, that issues related to the occupation of Turtle Island remain as a central point of analysis.

quote:

[b]Third, the feminist forum doesn't always do well with issues that are beyond the mainstay of white women's feminism. [/b]

The feminism forum does not do well with issues that are [i]the mainstay of white women's feminism [/i] either, and not because of the women.

quote:

[b]Frankly, I think a very similar discussion would have likely gone the same way if the feminism thread had been the one that stayed open. [/b]

Perhaps, perhaps not.

quote:

[b]I think the possibility of pushing the analysis a little further, as Makwa has indicated, is a bit more possible in this forum.[/b]

That too, is an unknown.

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: remind ]

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

I think we should listen to the aboriginal voices here.

eta: Oldgoats words were not worthy of a moderator. I'm not sure this site is what I thought.

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: RevolutionPlease ]

remind remind's picture

quote:


Originally posted by RevolutionPlease:
[b]I think we should listen to the aboriginal voices here.[/b]

Which one? The female FN voice that thinks this should be in the feminist forum, or the male voice which says it shouldn't?

quote:

[b]eta: Oldgoats words were not worthy of a moderator.[/b]

Martin should not have started the same thread in 2 different forums, in the first place.

quote:

[b]I'm not sure this site is what I thought.[/b]

When you find a perfect site please let us know, and personally, I am pissed that this world is not what I thought.

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: remind ]

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

quote:


Originally posted by remind:
[b]

When you find a perfect site please let us know, and personally, I am pissed that this world is not what I thought.[/b]


Good point Remind, thanks.

Since it's a woman's issue, the female voice must be most pertinent but I'm lost on who's who.

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: RevolutionPlease ]

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: RevolutionPlease ]

Makwa Makwa's picture

quote:


Originally posted by remind:
[b]Which one? The female FN voice that thinks this should be in the feminist forum, or the male voice which says it shouldn't?[/b]

I hope it doesn't sound like I think this is not a point for discussion in the feminist forum - I only thought that it wasn't necessarily inappropriate for the AV forum. But you raise an important point, and in retrospect, I think I did not listen to zazzo's voice with sufficient respect, and for that I apologize. In retrospect, I think that perhaps this issue can be dealth with with more respect in the femenist forum.

AfroHealer

quote:


Originally posted by Makwa:
[b] In retrospect, I think that perhaps this issue can be dealth with with more respect in the femenist forum.[/b]

Lest we forget. This segregation of peoples (Male & female) in the way its done in Eurocentric world view. Is also an alien & colonial imposition.

I'm concerned about the terms of reference being primarily eurocentric. We should be free to discuss issues that affect our sisters, in ways that are respectful of our collective and shared history. Which is something that overwhelmingly is outside of the white feminist discuss.

Similar issues are experienced within other minority Womens and Feminist groups.

Lets take steps to end this pattern here.

And if anyone feels that asking to respect others, especially aboriginal peoples, is too restrictive. Then they should be encourage to change, instead of accommodating the abusive relationship.

Being inclusive, means including & respecting the collective US.

From your brother from another mother.

Erik Redburn

"I'm concerned about the terms of reference being primarily eurocentric. We should be free to discuss issues that affect our sisters, in ways that are respectful of our collective and shared history. Which is something that overwhelmingly is outside of the white feminist discuss."

This particular problem however resides in our particular eurocentric society, yet certain issues like the exploitation of women by men are not entirely matters of relative ethnicity either. I'm not comfortable myself with the placement of a thread on prostitution in the aborigional forum for other reasons as well.

remind remind's picture

quote:


Originally posted by AfroHealer:
[b]Lest we forget. This segregation of peoples (Male & female) in the way its done in Eurocentric world view. Is also an alien & colonial imposition.[/b]

Respectfully, this is not in anyway accurate.

quote:

[b]I'm concerned about the terms of reference being primarily eurocentric. [/b]

A place where we meet, I too am concerned, I am concerned about zazzo's voice not being heard, or listened to. A person who we ALL should be listening to.

quote:

[b]We should be free to discuss issues that affect our sisters, in ways that are respectful of our collective and shared history.[/b]

Again, a place where we meet, I too think we should be hearing what our sisters have to say in this issue, and this is in particular, why what zazoo has to say should be listened to, in a respectful way, and to not have a meta debate outside of what is being discussed in this thread as the topic.

quote:

[b] Which is something that overwhelmingly is outside of the white feminist discuss.[/b]

Respectfully, you cannot make that type of sweeping generalization.

quote:

[b]Similar issues are experienced within other minority Womens and Feminist groups.[/b]

This topic actually is not about this, and zazoo, a FN woman's voice has stated, that this topic needs to be discussed as a woman's issue. I would like to very much discuss this topic, decisions and actions around this action, or fight against action, will be actioned by me directly within my province in league with other woman's organizations. Before I do this I would very much like to have a discussion with zazoo, and other women.

quote:

[b]Lets take steps to end this pattern here.[/b]

Here again we meet, I agree with you on ending patterns, patterns such as; men taking over women's issues topics and makinging them into another meta debate about what they choose, has to stop.

quote:

[b]And if anyone feels that asking to respect others, especially aboriginal peoples, is too restrictive. Then they should be encourage to change, instead of accommodating the abusive relationship.[/b]

Again we meet, I too would like to stop accommodating abusive relationships and we need to encourage change.

quote:

[b]Being inclusive, means including & respecting the collective US. [/b]

Again, I agree, and it seems to be in short supply in respect to woman's issues, as it seems males want the collective US to be male dominated.

Now, would you like to say something about this action? As for myself, having read AWAN's perspective, and further research, on the legalization of brothels for the Olympics, I will now more seriously look at the implications, discuss it with women further and review what it all means, as formerly, I was in favour of legalization, though not for the Olympics.

[ 16 December 2007: Message edited by: remind ]

martin dufresne

PRESS RELEASE

[b]CLES says NO to the violence of prostitution[/b]

Montreal, December 17, 2007 – December 17 has been declared the International Day to End Violence Against Women in Prostitution. The members of the Concertation des luttes contre l’exploitation sexuelle (CLES) wish to acknowledge this event and reiterate their rejection of all forms of violence exerted, here and elsewhere in the world, against women and girls who find themselves in situations of prostitution. We denounce the psychological, sexual, physical, judicial and symbolic violence exerted against them – as against countless women in a patriarchal society – but we also denounce the judicial and social repression experienced by women in prostitution.

This violence occurs because our society would rather harass and criminalize these women than take on the people who are the source of these forms of violence, that is pimps and clients. The current application of laws and regulations, at all three levels of government, focuses on criminalizing women rather than challenging clients and pimps. These last enjoy various forms of inaction and complicity, and therefore feel entirely entitled to treat persons in prostitution as a source of profits and gratification.

In the view of the various organizations and individuals belonging to the CLES, current attempts to have procuring and brothels decriminalized or legalized would only worsen this violence by legitimizing the commercial sexual exploitation of women. Assault statistics indicate that pimps and clients are no less misogynist and violent behind closed doors than in street prostitution. The evidence presented during Robert Pickton’s trial establishes that his B.C. farm was essentially a brothel; Pickton has admitted having killed 49 women. In Quebec, at least 5 of the 14 women in prostitution murdered by men over the last ten years were employed by escort agencies, brothels, swingers clubs, bars, or visited buyers of “sexual services”. This organized violence must end.

The solution is not to normalize the prostitution industry – as some are demanding – but to target and challenge male “demand” for it. CLES is adamant that a world without prostitution is possible. Recent developments in countries such as Sweden establish that, rather than criminalizing women in situations of prostitution, it is much more effective to offer them substantive solutions by a) no longer arresting them, b) truly answering their needs, and c) punishing their exploiters. Moreover, situating the institution of prostitution in the continuum of violence against women allows society to build solutions aimed at substantive equality for all women.

This substantive support is the one long demanded by impoverished, homeless, immigrant and drug-dependant women, who constitute the majority of the women locked in situations of human trafficking and survival prostitution. They require psychological support services, access to affordable housing and child care, detox facilities, return to school programs, the possibility of joining the workplace in satisfying jobs, income security, access to justice and simplified immigration procedures.

In memoriam: Fourteen of the women employed by the “sex industry” and killed by men in Quebec over the last 10 years: 1998: Marlиne Hogue, 30; 2000: Colette Rondeau, 35; 2001: Melissa Williski, 23; Josйe Johnston, 28; 2002: Lise Laporte, 35; 2003: Sidney Normandin, 37; Julie Marcil, 26; Vйronique Lalonde, 21; 2005: Cynthia « La Mouette », 35; 2006 : Guylaine Bйlanger, 43; Kelly Morisseau, 27; 2007: Stйphanie Forest, 20; Marie-France Robichaud, 52; Nicole Chaput, 49.

Created in March 2005, CLES is composed of front-line workers, academic researchers, authors and representatives of community and faith organizations. We all do popular education and advocacy work for people struggling with prostitution, a form of violence that is the polar opposite of equality between women and men, whether it happens on the street or via ‘escort’ agencies, ‘erotic’ massage parlors, ‘specialized’ bars or brothels, or via pornography or the Internet. Prostitution especially impacts women who experience multiple forms of marginalization (poor, racialized, migrants, Aboriginal, teenagers, survivors of incest or rape, etc.)

- 30 -

CLES: [email]la_c[email protected][/email]

[url=http://sisyphe.org/rubrique.php3?id_rubrique=87]CLES previous statements (French)[/url]

Website tallying [url=http://sisyphe.org/article.php3?id_article=2686]murders of women and youths by men in Quebec, in 2007[/url]. For preceding 9 years, click on left-hand menu.

[url=http://sisyphe.org/rubrique.php3?id_rubrique=124]Statements by Ex-Prostitutes Against Legislated Sexual Servitude (X-PALSS)[/url]

[ 17 December 2007: Message edited by: martin dufresne ]

zazzo

I am requesting that this thread be moved to the feminist forum.
I have noticed also, that Martin used a different title when he posted in the feminist forum.
The title he used in the Aboriginal issues forum,
"AWAN takes on 'legal brothels' project", makes it seem as though AWAN was working on a project to set up a legal brothel.
Just curious as to why the topic titles are so different.

[ 17 December 2007: Message edited by: zazzo ]

Michelle

Okay, I'll move it. Sorry for not doing it earlier - I just saw this now. [img]smile.gif" border="0[/img]

martin dufresne

If one wishes to avoid any possible confusion created by the topic title, I am fine with it reading "AWAN challenges 'legal brothels' project" or "Aboriginal women's group denounces 'legal brothels' project". The original title in the Feminism thread - "'Legal brothel': AWAN implores that Aboriginal women's voices be heard" - is perhaps best. (I had just tried to shorten it when I posted AWAN's letter to Mayor Sullivan to the Aboriginal issues and culture forum.)

[ 17 December 2007: Message edited by: martin dufresne ]

oldgoat

quote:


eta: Oldgoats words were not worthy of a moderator. I'm not sure this site is what I thought.

Sorry you feel that way RP. To be honest, when I first saw the OP in both forums, I gave it a fairly close reading, and honestly couldn't decide which forum to leave it in. martin appeared to be wanting to discuss that as specificaly an aboriginal womens matter, but I could see it going other places too. Leaving it in both didn't seem an option. In leaving it where I did, I felt I was most respecting the intent of the original poster, which was my main criteria. Actually I stared at it for a while, and the criteria was so narrow it sort of felt like a coin toss.

In the remark you quote I was posting in a hurry, so if I appeared flippant (and I did appear flippant) I apologise.

remind remind's picture

zazzo, I want to learn everything I can from the Aboriginal women who are working on this issue.
What, or where do you think a starting point in exploring/actioning this should happen for someone who is completely un-informed.

I am ashamed and embarassed that it has taken me so long to have an awakening that I must get involved in the sexual exploitation of, and violence against, women more directly. My ability to put it as an [i]overthere[/i] issue, in particular, is shaming to me.

For example, recently I spent a week at a friends apartment in Nanaimo, it has great view of both the water front, and downtown Nanaimo. Watching all those young girls prostituting themselves was upsetting, but at the time I was able to say to myself; "glad it is not my daughter out there" and then shrug it off as not my problem. I was wrong, tragically wrong, it is my problem, it is ALL our problem.

Perhaps many are doing what I did, and perhaps some are now feeling the shame as I do, but still do not know where to start to make the changes needed directly with as loud of an impact as possible.

AfroHealer

quote:


Originally posted by zazzo:
[b]I am requesting that this thread be moved to the feminist forum.
][/b]

On reflection .. I was wrong. I now agree with Zazzo. This is the more respectful place to have the dialog.

AfroHealer

quote:


Originally posted by remind:
[b] Again, I agree, and it seems to be in short supply in respect to woman's issues, as it seems males want the collective US to be male dominated.

Now, would you like to say something about this action? As for myself, having read AWAN's perspective, and further research, on the legalization of brothels for the Olympics, I will now more seriously look at the implications, discuss it with women further and review what it all means, as formerly, I was in favour of legalization, though not for the Olympics.

[ 16 December 2007: Message edited by: remind ][/b]


Remind: the point about the white feminist movement, overwhelmingly ignoring or suppressing the voices of racialised women, Is saddly accurate. I don't want to contribute to thread drift, So feel free to start a new thread, if your initial research on the voices of racialised feminist falls short.

Now back to the topic at hand. ..

I must say I am for decriminilasstion, because it does not further victimise the victims when they seek help from Police or other sources.

I am Leary of the legalisation, because we are looking at issues of child abuse ,as well as abuse of women in general.

It is shameful that we have created a world, that does not respectfully provide for the disenfranchised in our society. and instead choose to legalise the abusers.

Its shameful that all these resources that are put towards Olympics (something that only the relatively wealthy can afford to get tickets for), are not used to eradicate the root causes of poverty.

remind remind's picture

quote:


Originally posted by AfroHealer:
[b]Remind: the point about the white feminist movement, overwhelmingly ignoring or suppressing the voices of racialised women, Is saddly accurate. [/b]

You did not make that point, you made a sweeping generalization.

quote:

[b]I don't want to contribute to thread drift, So feel free to start a new thread, if your initial research on the voices of racialised feminist falls short. [/b]

Respectfully, I will not pander to your passive aggressive patriarchy, I need not start a new thread, the thread drift need not continue after my addressing a resopnse back to you, as you felt you had the right to with me, without starting a new thread.

quote:

[b]Its shameful that all these resources that are put towards Olympics (something that only the relatively wealthy can afford to get tickets for), are not used to eradicate the root causes of poverty.[/b]

I agree.

AfroHealer

quote:


Originally posted by remind:
[b]
quote:I don't want to contribute to thread drift, So feel free to start a new thread, if your initial research on the voices of racialised feminist falls short.

Respectfully, I will not pander to your passive aggressive patriarchy, I need not start a new thread, the thread drift need not continue after my addressing a resopnse back to you, as you felt you had the right to with me, without starting a new thread.[/b]


Can we not have honest dialoge withought resorting to a fight.

I share or stated something that you are obviously nto familiar with. I don't see how its passive aggressive for me to suggest that maybe you should research the issue, and if you cant find any info to start a topic, so others can provide you with the resources.

An in dept discussion of how the white feminist movement, has & continues to ignored the voices of POC. Is a fact. If you dont know it, that does not mean its not true.

Let us not let my gender confuse your or blind you from the truth.

This is a discussion about legalisation of Prostitution & the abuse of vulnerable women.

I am trying not to contribute to thread drift, I'm not running away from Your issue with my statements.

I have respectfully offered a way for the discussion to continue about the white feminist unhealthy relationships with the POC womens rights movement.

I'm confident that the moderators, would prefer that we don't distract from the issues that started this thread, by drifting into an in dept discussion of something else.

Feel free to Private message me, but lets respectfully end the thread drift.

This is the last that i shall comment on that in this thread, I will be more than happy to comment or just continue to read other responses, to the issues brought about by the AWAN here.

From your brother from another mother,

martin dufresne

AfroHealer, wouldn't you agree that both Black and White men have done a thousand times less than White feminists in acknowledging and opening up to the voices of "minority" women - both Black and Aboriginal? White women's voices have also been generally dissed by the Black male community. For instance, I have yet to read an apology from Black men for Stokely Carmichael's infamous statement "The only position for women in SNCC is prone."
Given this, it seems to me quite inappropriate for you to try and reroute AWAN women's appeal to solidarity into an indictment of White feminists. As I read it, AWAN's statement addresses the plight of *all* prostituted women and youths, not just Aboriginal women. Their inclusiveness speaks more to me than any exclusionary attempt.

[ 18 December 2007: Message edited by: martin dufresne ]

remind remind's picture

Afrohealer, frankly all your post is to me, is another post from a man who thinks his man pov is the only one applicable.

[ 18 December 2007: Message edited by: remind ]

Michelle

Personal attacks are against the rules on babble. Please stop.