Harm reduction is key in prostitution and human trafficking reform, AD says

Alternattiva Demokratika stresses need for harm reduction approach and consultation with people involved in prostitution in drawing up of reform

Prostitution and human trafficking reform should prioritise harm reduction and should involve discussion with those involved in the matter, AD said
Prostitution and human trafficking reform should prioritise harm reduction and should involve discussion with those involved in the matter, AD said

Alternattiva Demokratika has submitted its recommendations to the public consultation on the human trafficking and prostitution, underlining the need for an approach prioritising harm reduction and discussions with those directly involved in the matter.

In their recommendations submitted to the reforms parliamentary secretariat, AD stressed the need for a reform dealing with prostitution to be based on the principle of reducing harm and that effective policy in these areas can only happen if people involved in prostitution are consulted.

While the two reforms have some connections, it would have been better to address these in separate consultations, AD said in a press release on Saturday.

Additionally, the party pointed out other policy areas that should also be kept in mind when reforming policy on human trafficking, in particular migration and asylum policy, and for more research to be carried out locally.

“The reform on prostitution should be a social policy reform, where resources are allocated to holistic support services, including health and education, which resources should be accessible,” AD EU affairs spokesperson Mina Tolu said.

“When criminal legislation, based on the so-called 'Nordic Model' which seeks to criminalise clients, are used to address prostitution, police resources are wasted on surveillance of prostitutes in order to catch clients, instead of being used to investigate and address actual crimes like violence, exploitation and trafficking," Tolu underscored.

The party’s social affairs spokesperson, Anna Azzopardi also highlighted that the public consultation has shown the need for a much wider conversation in Malta on sex, consent, self-determination and agency.

“We would welcome these conversations to go beyond moralistic judgments, it is not ok to shame or stigmatise people for having consensual sex. It is also time to invest in comprehensive sexual education and invest more in the GU clinic and other sexual health services,” Azzopardi added. 

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