Prostitution laws that criminalize both parties are poor legislation that has punished women – for years.

Kudos to the Maine House, which recently passed good legislation that keeps the criminal charges for those who buy and/or broker sex but removes the penalty on the sellers and thus, corrects the discriminatory practice of arresting those who have to sell their bodies for sex.

The sex industry is a business based on treating women’s bodies as a commodity to be bought and sold. This bill (L.D. 1435) is designed to help reduce demand. No buyers equals no demand for this inherently harmful business. There have always been those who justify holding on to a system that benefits them, despite widespread harm to others. Why should people with this “job” have to have their relationship with the police as a primary concern?

I urge my fellow Maine citizens in the Senate to pass this bill and Gov. Mills to sign it into law.

Kate Butler

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