Mr. Speaker, June 2 is International Sex Workers' Day: a day to celebrate sex workers, to honour their work and to push for better working conditions.
Women, men, queer, trans and non-binary sex workers are workers. They are members of our communities and deserve dignity and respect, and not stigma. Stigma leads to barriers in accessing health care, to isolation and to dangerous working conditions.
Our laws, while claiming to protect sex workers, actually cause more harm by making it harder to report violence and screen potential clients.
We need to end the stigma and listen to the voices of sex workers, who are calling for decriminalization and calling on MPs to stop conflating sex work with human trafficking, because it makes it harder to keep people safe.
Instead, let us support the sex work community. One amazing organization doing just that is Peers Victoria Resources Society. It is an organization by sex workers, for sex workers.
On June 2, let us celebrate sex workers and end the stigma. Sex work is work.