Taking the Crime Out of Sex Work: New Zealand Sex Workers' Fight for Decriminalisation

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Policy Press, 2010 - Social Science - 271 pages
"This superb collection speaks to the international community as it truly is a one-stop guide to the politics and policies of prostitution in New Zealand, which demonstrates how to regulate sex work without moral judgement."-Teela Sanders, Senior Lecturer in Sociology, University of Leeds, UK

"A major contribution to our understanding of prostitution when it is decriminalised and regulated by the government. The authors offer a path-breaking analysis of the New Zealand experience, and show that decriminalisation can be a superior alternative to the common policy of criminalisation."-Ronald Weitzer, Professor of Sociology, George Washington University, USA

New Zealand was the first country in the world to decriminalise all sectors of sex work. Previous criminal or civil laws governing sex work and related offences were revoked in 2003, and sex workers became subject to the same controls and regulations as any other occupational group.

This book provides an in-depth look at New Zealand's experience of decriminalisation. It provides first-hand views and experiences of this policy from the points of view of those involved in the sex industry, as well as people involved in developing, implementing, researching and reviewing the policy. Valuable comparisons pre- and post-decriminalisation are made, based on research in the sex industry prior to decriminalisation.

Presenting an example of radical legal reform in an area of current policy debate this book will be of interest to academics, researchers and postgraduates in criminal justice, political science, sociology, gender studies and social policy, as well as policy makers and activists.

Gillian Abel is a senior public health lecturer and researcher and senior lecturer at the University of Otago, New Zealand. She has research expertise in the areas of public health and sex work.

Lisa Fitzgerald is a public health sociologist and social science lecturer in the School of Population Health, University of Queensland, Australia.

Catherine Healy is a founding member of the New Zealand Prostitutes' Collective, and is currently the national coordinator.

Aline Taylor comes from a background in anthropology, with a particular interest in researching issues on development, sport and gender.

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1 Introduction
Leadup to the passing of the 2003 Prostitution Reform Act
a history of the sex industry in New Zealand
3 History of the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective
4 Lobbying for decriminalisation
5 The Prostitution Reform Act
feminist views of prostitution reform
Implementation and impact of the 2003 Prostitution Reform Act the first five years
9 The continuing regulation of prostitution by local authorities
methodology and methods
public health authorities experience of implementing the Prostitution Reform Act
12 The media and the Prostitution Reform Act
a public health perspective
14 Decriminalisation and stigma
15 Conclusion

7 Review of the Prostitution Reform Act
8 Brothel operators and support agencies experiences of decriminalisation

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About the author (2010)

Gillian Abel, University of Otago, Lisa Fitzgerald, School of Population Health, University of Queensland, Catherine Healy, New Zealand Prostitutes' Collective, with and Aline Taylor

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