Amnesty International argues sex workers in Norway are subjected to extensive human rights violations.
The organization launches Thursday a new report, in which it points out a number of unacceptable circumstances. Secretary General John Peder Egenæs believes Norway does not ensure sex workers’ rights, to which the government is internationally committed.
– What is problematic with the “Nordic model” where buying sex is criminalized but not sale, is the apparent safeguarding of sex workers interests, whilst in reality it makes sex workers the a focus of police for criminal prosecutions and leads to extensive violations on sex workers’ rights, says Amnesty International.
Amnesty believes sex work between consenting adults should be allowed, arguing there is no research evidence that shows the sex market has diminished as a result of the ban.
The report “The human cost of crushing the market” describes the Oslo police’s preventive work and stress methods that are intended to create unrest in the environment. Prostitutes gets thrown out of the apartment they work or live in, they are subjected to surveillance in the street, questioned, arrested and risk being thrown out of the country. They are being fined because they refuse to give their name or they will be evicted.
Some are reluctant to carry condoms because this is something police often looks for. Police confirm that the findings of condoms in an apartment is being used as evidence of prostitution. In practice it is thus a criminal offense to possess condoms, it claimed.
– The police use all their powers to frame women, because this is the easiest way to get rid of the problem, says a lawyer who is not named in the report.
Do not report
Because of police behavior women avoid reporting crimes they are subjected to.
– You only call the police if you think you’re going to die, says a woman who is interviewed.
The report says several sex workers were kicked out of apartments they lived in after reporting rape and robbery.
The organization believes that Norway violates the victims’ right to protection from violence and discrimination because they lack real opportunity to report abuse.
Source: NTB Scanpix / Norway Today