Lawsuit filed to decriminalize prostitution in California
A lawsuit was filed against government attorneys last week in what proponents say is part of a fight to decriminalize prostitution in the state of California. Many details of the case were reported in this article on VICE:
…the Erotic Service Providers Legal, Education, and Research Project (ESPLERP) filed a lawsuit against the attorney general of the state of California, as well as several district attorneys, in a case they say has the potential to decriminalize prostitution in a handful of Western states.
The plaintiffs allege that their constitutional rights have been violated by enforcement of California’s prostitution law.
All of the plaintiffs are listed anonymously, using initials and a pseudonym. Three are former prostitutes who hope to work as prostitutes again in the Northern District of California, but fear arrest and prosecution. The fourth plaintiff, John Doe, is a disabled man who wishes to hire prostitutes in the Northern District of California. Together, they claim that enforcement of prostitution laws violates their constitutional rights to privacy, free speech, substantive due process right to earn a living, and freedom of association. They are asking for a declaration that California’s prostitution statute is unconstitutional, an order prohibiting the defendants from enforcing the prostitution statute, and attorney fees.
Whenever the subject of sexually transmitted diseases comes up on this site I always make it clear that I am not a medical expert. Well I am not a legal expert either. I have no idea whether or not this lawsuit will succeed and whether or not it will serve to decriminalize sex work in California even if it does.
What I do know is that prostitution should not be illegal as I have stated here time and time again with plenty to back up my argument. It should be obvious then that I support the intentions of this lawsuit even if I’m not well versed in the practicality of it. Who knows? Perhaps it could very well win. I never thought I would see marijuana legalized in the United States in my life time but people are now free to smoke up in the nation’s capital.
Unlike marijuana there is no federal law against prostitution so if sex work was decriminalized in California there would be no question about whether or not participants could still be arrested by someone higher up the ladder. California would join a few counties in Nevada where sex work was legally permitted.
As stated the Erotic Service Providers Legal, Education, and Research Project is behind the legal action which apparently started years ago. The organization has already raised $30,000 to support the case and was trying to raise $30,000 more via crowdfunding through a GoFundMe campaign. GoFundMe shutdown the campaign after it raised its first $520 but the organization is still looking for donations. It says the best way to contribute is to mail a check or money order to: ESPLERP, 2261 Market St. #548, San Francisco, CA, 94114.
As regular readers or anyone who has gone over this site knows, I don’t advocate or recommend anything. This site is meant for entertainment purposes only. Still if there has ever been a campaign that could win my support this would be it.