Fresh off her role as a sexuality employee in Showtime’s 70 s-era drama “The Deuce, ” Maggie Gyllenhaal thinks it’s hour we decriminalize sex work.
In an interview with Elle, Gyllenhaal shared her thinks on the industry portrayed on the small screen, saying, “My instinct is to say decriminalize it and make sure everybody’s safe, healthy and taken care of.”
It was a passing statement in Gyllnhaal’s interview, but for many activists, the struggle to decriminalize sex work is central to their own well-being and human rights.
In 2015, human rights organization Amnesty International came out in favor of decriminalizing sex run , noting that the continued criminalization of the industry fosters a culture of a sort of permanent societal underclass filled with workers who are regularly assaulted and discriminated against in housing and healthcare.
The following year, Amnesty International published a full policy recommendation, stressing that they support decriminalization of sexuality run that doesn’t involve coercion, exploitation, or abuse — this is key , given that adversaries of decriminalization often conflate willful, consensual sex work with human trafficking.
“We want statutes to be refocused on constructing sex[ workers’] lives safer and improving the relationship they have with the police while addressing the very real issue of exploitation, ” wrote Tawanda Mutasah, senior director for Law and Policy at Amnesty International. “We want the administration is make sure no one is coerced to sell sex, or is unable to leave sexuality work if they choose to.”
In 2012, the World Health Organization came out in favor of decriminalization, arguing that existing anti-sex run laws avoid employees from accessing necessary healthcare, and in fact, contribute to increased risk of HIV/ AIDS within that population. This conclusion was later backed up by a 2014 study published at The Lancet, which suggests that decriminalization could “have the largest consequence on the course of the HIV epidemic.”
Blogs like the sexuality worker-run Tits& Sass and groups like the New York-based Red Umbrella Project and Canada’s Safe Harbour Outreach Project glistens a light on the fight and injustices faced within the industry — many of those injustices coming as a direct result of criminalization.
There are a lot of really good reasons to decriminalize sexuality run, and it’s good to see that Gyllenhaal is on the right side of this issue.
She may not be a sex worker( she simply plays one on Tv ), but at least that’s helped dedicate her the perspective and empathy necessary to lend her voice to support those who are and have been.
Make sure to visit: CapGeneration.com