City of New Westminster Aims to Keep Sex Workers Safe
Following a motion approved by the city council in June 2021, the City of New Westminster in British Columbia, Canada is developing a work plan related to sex worker safety. The work plan includes “a council and senior staff workshop on sex worker safety; case study research of policies and/or guidelines in other Canadian cities; the development of a framework to address sex workers safety (that includes input from individuals with lived or living experience); and input from city departments to consider potential resourcing and work program implications.”
A city council staff report focused on the responsibilities of local governments to keep their communities safe (and those communities include sex workers!) and points out that BIPOC, transgender, and disabled workers face more barriers to the support that they need. The report also takes a broad definition of sex work to include escorting on the street and in hotels, working in massage parlors and clubs, producing content online, and more. The city council will consider the policies and bylaws of the work plan this fall 2022.