We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

File photo Julien Behal/PA Archive/Press Association Images

'Pimping and trafficking' continues as Dáil reviews prostitution laws

Calls have been made for the immediate introduction of new laws to target buyers of sex.

THE IMMIGRANT COUNCIL of Ireland has called on the government to introduce laws to target the buyers of sex in the new Dáil term.

The group, which is one of 68 members of Turn Off the Red Light Campaign, believes that pimps and traffickers continue their organised crime unabated.

A review of Ireland’s prostitution laws has been ongoing for 15 months. In July, an Oireachtas committee agreed that people who pay for sex should face criminal charges but prostitutes should not.

In its ‘Report 0n the Review of the Legislation on Prostitution in Ireland’, the Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality says that the purchase of sexual services, or any attempt to do so, should be an offence. Members recommended increased penalties for sex traffickers, harsher punishments for organisers or prostitution rings and making the use of a premises for prostitution an offence.

“The Department of Justice review of the prostitution laws has prompted countless media debates, over 800 written submissions, 6 months of hearings and unanimous recommendations from the Oireachtas Justice Committee,” said chief executive of the Immigrant Council, Denise Charlton.

“However, the reality is pimps and sex-traffickers are as free to go about their criminal activity today as they were a year and a half ago.”

It is now over two months since the Committee issued its recommendations and we would like all political parties to use the return of the Oireachtas to act and send a strong message to organised crime gang that their time is running out.  The debate cannot continue forever.

The Turn Off the Red Light Campaign, which is backed by a number of doctors, nurses, trade unions, human rights activists and survivors, plan to mobilise their campaign in the coming weeks.

According to anti-trafficking coordinator Nusha Yonkova, there are currently 800 women for sale online in Ireland. Last year, 19 children were discovered to be involved in Irish commercial sex.

Read: The Wikileaks Party got fewer votes than the Australian Sex Party

More: Second man arrested over Facebook posts about Michael Le Vell trial

Read: Vatican envoy sacked over child sex probe

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.