Fine Gael Cork Senator Deirdre has today (Monday) welcomed the announcement from Minister Shatter that a review of legislation on prostitution is to commence shortly. The Minister has ensured everything that can reasonably be done to combat the exploitation of vulnerable persons through prostitution and human trafficking will be done. The law on prostitution is currently being reviewed with a view to enhancing the protection of vulnerable persons. As part of this review, the Minister will be arranging a consultation process on the future direction of prostitution legislation. A detailed document is being prepared on this and is due for publication in the coming weeks.
“This is very welcome news while we have stringent laws in this country regarding prostitution we cannot do enough to protect an individual there is always room for improvement. The Criminal Law (Sexual Offences Act) is due to be introduced by the government later this year.
Ireland has strong legislation to combat the scourge of human trafficking for sexual exploitation. The Criminal Law (Human Trafficking) Act 2008 gave effect to Ireland’s obligations in various international instruments to criminalise human trafficking. The trafficking of persons for sexual exploitation, including prostitution, is a criminal offence and those convicted of such trafficking are liable to life imprisonment. In addition, it is an offence under the legislation for any person to knowingly solicit or importune a trafficked person, in any place, for the purpose of prostitution.
This is an issue which affects many individuals and communities. It is also a societal issue. Prostitution is also linked to the trafficking of women and children which must also be a fundamental part of this report. Public debate should be open to the widest possible audience and I want to welcome the Minister’s commitment to ensure that everyone who wishes to make a contribution to this important debate is given the opportunity to do so”. said Senator Clune.