Sex Work and the City: Creating Municipal Licensing Regimes for Brothels
Powell, Maria K
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The debate over how to regulate sex work in Canada has long occupied courts, governments, policymakers, sex workers and activists. In the aftermath of the Supreme Court decision in Bedford v Canada and the enactment of the constitutionally suspect Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act, this thesis examines municipal law’s potential role in regulating brothels. Municipalities already grant licenses to adult service providers, the licensing of brothels is a natural extension of their powers. The current licensing regimes are in need of reform, both for adult services and before any attempts to license brothels. This thesis uses New Zealand as an example of an effective licensing regime. By treating the sex trade akin to other industries and respecting the expertise of those who work in it, there are minimal disruptions in communities and safer working conditions for employees.