Mr. Speaker, the number of women missing from the downtown east side is a tragedy. Earlier this month the joint police task force released the names of 18 more women who are missing, bringing the number to 45 women. Many of them were involved in the sex trade and were at risk of the most awful violence and death.
I believe all levels of government must co-operate with all possible resources to find out what has happened to these women and to prevent more deaths and harm from taking place. SFU criminologist John Lowman has said repeatedly that women will continue to disappear and be killed unless Canada's prostitution laws are changed.
I implore the Minister of Justice to pay attention. Her bent on security in Bill C-36 did not help these women. Yet their dangerous environment is caused by federal laws pertaining to the sex trade.
These women are not pieces of garbage that can be disposed of. They are human beings with every right to dignity, safety and hope for the future. They demand our attention.