Carleton University Speech

It’s good to be back in Ottawa again, and I’m pleased to be part of this important conference. The students and staff from The Carleton Human Rights Society and The Womyn’s Centre, and others, organized it. Those others include The Pauline Jewett Institute for Women’s and Gender Studies. They include the Department of Anthropology and Sociology, and the Department of Law and Legal Studies. And also the Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies. Please join me in thanking them for all they have done. 

Then there are the sponsors of the conference. Thanks to Ottawa Public Interest Research Group Carleton, The Rideau River Residence Association, The Graduate Students’ Association, The Carleton Disability Awareness Centre, and the other clubs and departments who helped out.

Wow. Carleton certainly has much to boast about. And, I’m told their dominatrix courses are first rate. Here’s a riddle for you. What do a dominatrix and a woman professor at Carleton have in common? Answer. They both give you marks.

I have been to Ottawa before. I have been to Ottawa several times to fight the laws against the sex trade. In 1994 I was charged with running a bawdy house, The Bondage Bungalow. The charges were thrown out of court in 1995. The Crown won their 1996 appeal and in 1997 I was at the Supreme Court, which threw out my appeal. We went to trial in 1998. I was convicted, but to this day cannot tell you why. I lost my appeal in Ontario in 1999. That decision was legendary for how bad it was. In 2000 the Supreme Court in Ottawa refused to grant leave to appeal. Of course during and before all that I was in court many other times, and in jail, all under the old laws, which were finally struck down as unconstitutional. And remember, most of what happens is not publicized. I wrote a book about that called Dominatrix on Trial.

After the hearings and decisions in Toronto on the constitutional case from 2007 to 2012, I was back in Ottawa again in June 2013 for the hearing day for the final appeals in Bedford Versus Canada, the case that struck down the old laws against prostitution once and for all. You probably remember the pictures of demonstrations by sex workers and those against sex work in front of the court. Reporters told me they had never seen anything like it at the Supreme Court. I came to Ottawa again in December 2013, when the decision was released. It was a day that made headlines around the world – just like in 2010. I came to Ottawa yet again, in September 2014, to testify about the proposed new law, Bill C-36, at the Senate. I got thrown out for not shutting up. In November 2014 I came to to Ottawa again, to the University of Ottawa campus to speak to the Ontario Civil Liberties Association, who made me the recipient of their award for 2014. They didn’t throw me out.

And now I’m here again, this time at Carleton, but what a difference. Instead of me getting thrown out the government got thrown out; just under 2 years after their prostitution laws were thrown out. The new law, Bill C-36 is doomed one way or the other. And, at long last, we may finally have a fair and open discussion in this country about the sex trade, and about who decides what, before any policies are adopted. 

But before I tell you what I think should be allowed and not allowed, I want to speak to you about why there is a sex trade and what it means in the real world.

I’d like to begin by talking about the motivations of sex trade participants and activists, for and against. Why motivation? Well, it explains so much.

Let’s start with the clients, and here I will focus on heterosexual men paying women. There are of course several reasons why men pay women for sex acts, whatever that means. Let’s take married men. After a while most of them crave some variety. They see women on television and the Internet, at work and on the street or when they socialize with friends. They are attracted to some of these. They remember what it was like at the beginning of their relationships, and miss that excitement. They miss being physical with a woman without knowing her baggage. The then and there. And if the woman is discreet, like a sex worker, he can confide in her the way he can’t confide in his wife or girlfriend. He can tell her the kinky things he wants to do but is afraid, often with good reasons, to tell his partner. It’s a lot of pressure to keep deeply felt desires secret, let alone have them fulfilled. It may be something as simple as having sex without worrying about satisfying his partner or being pressured about commitment.

Then there are clients who have no partners. They may be handicapped. They may be shy. They may be too poor to marry. They may be separated or divorced. Or, they may simply not want to live with a woman or have a steady girlfriend. A man who has sex with a sex worker once a month is as sexually active as many couples married for several years, at least those couples that even stay together for several years.

So, our clients have a piece in the puzzle of their lives available to them. Many have told me that knowing they were going to have a session with me once a month or whatever seemed to make the rest of their lives much better. It was a wonderful secret to have. And keeping it secret protected them from ridicule or damage to their relationships with their partners, if they had one, or their families. It is unfortunate that we have to live secretly so often in what we say and do, but that is reality.

Now, on to the motivations of the sex trade worker. Well, why does anyone do anything? Usually it’s because they need an income, or more income. How many women want to clean toilets for low pay or want to work in a factory for low pay? How many want to serve in the armed forces and get sexually harassed, and persecuted if they complain about it? The point is that few people would do their jobs for free, even if they had big savings. And they often choose to follow the money.

Sex workers can make good money. You may only need a few hours a month for the administrative parts of the job and seeing a client once a week might provide enough income to get by. It may not be the only thing you do for money, or the only thing you do. Some students work their way through university, and some of them see only one client or a few. Some have sugar daddies. They can work around their class schedules and so forth. Other sex workers work for agencies. Others are in business for themselves.

Women want to be desired and pursued. Being paid for their time and attention is very flattering to some. Some women enjoy sex with multiple partners. I could go on with examples of why women may be attracted to sex work. But at the bottom of it is money. If the government wanted to reduce sex work among those less inclined to it the best way is to invest in higher welfare for single mothers and in daycare centres, and in collecting court ordered payments from dead-beat dads.

Now, how does one go about being a sex worker in a safe setting? Well, for one, have a steady location, with others on the premises who can act as security. When I had my houses I had a baby monitor hidden in the room with my security employee in another room who was on the alert when I had clients. The clients never knew, although they were told security was on the premises. You can hire expertise about advertising for such clientele as you wish on the Internet and elsewhere. You can also join an agency where these services are shared. And of course you can meet men in bars and hotels, among other places, aside from the streets. I won’t go into any more details now, but I think you get the idea.

Now get this. From time to time the law may, repeat may, be a minor factor, repeat minor factor, in what you choose to do. The old laws were rarely enforced, the new law almost never has been and is going the way of the dodo one way or the other. The authorities only have the resources to concentrate on clear cases of human trafficking and underage sex workers and clear violence against women that comes to their attention. Even if the new law was upheld and vigorously enforced, the trade would just go further underground, and its worst aspects would proliferate.

Prior to 2010 the prostitution laws were a mess. The sale of sex was legal, as was its purchase. But if it was done from the same location repeatedly, or if someone earned an income helping a sex worker, or if people communicated for the purpose of paid sex, they were breaking the law. Not only that, but sex acts were not listed. For example, if I tied up and whipped a client, and I have done plenty of that, especially to professors, under what circumstances is it a sex act? I think you get the idea. Not only that, but the laws themselves endangered people engaged in a legal activity – paid sex. Professor Alan Young organized and led a constitutional challenge to the prostitution laws. I was one of the 3 plaintiffs. Val Scott and Amy Lebovitch were the others.

In 2010, after almost 2 years of hearings and one year of deliberation, Judge Susan Himel, issued a 131 page decision. I quote from my book what she said. “She found that our application was right. The laws against communicating for the purposes of prostitution, living off the avails of prostitution, and keeping a common bawdy house were unconstitutional for a number of reasons. For one thing, they did not achieve their objectives but in fact worked in the opposite direction. She agreed that the laws prevented prostitutes from protecting themselves, and that the laws protected the perpetrators of violence against women more than they inhibited such violence. She agreed that indoor prostitution was safer than street prostitution. She agreed that the current prostitution laws were only minimally enforced. She agreed that the laws were too broad, leading to unelected officials distinguishing right from wrong. She agreed that striking down the laws would not lead to a dramatic increase in prostitution. She pointed out that numerous other laws are already on the books to combat the worst aspects of the sex trade.” So, the judge was saying the laws themselves were illegal.

The government fought our application. They spared no expense. They appealed when there were no grounds to appeal. They offered crap as evidence and arguments. Above all they wanted the issue to go away as long as possible. They did not want to be in the position of having to tell women when and under what conditions they could engage in sex acts. They did not want to define what are and what are not sex acts. They knew that women were being abused and killed because of the laws. They knew from the evidence in our case. But they also knew from the Pickton Inquiry, where the judge said the laws were much of the cause. They knew because of the epidemic of missing and murdered Aboriginal women into which they refused to call an inquiry. They knew but they put themselves first and kicked the can down the road. They lost right down the line and the Supreme Court laid down guidelines for any new laws that might come along.

The government, as we predicted, brought in a variant of the so-called Nordic model, which penalizes purchasers of sex acts and those such as advertisers who assist sex trade workers with their business, but does not charge those selling sex. As predicted the new law was not constitutional in the view of independent legal experts. Professor Young, in his testimony before the Senate annihilated the law’s constitutionality. The witnesses appearing in support of C-36 gave the same crap that was rejected by the courts. Conservative commentators prostituted themselves to support the bill. Overpaid and under-worked trained seals. C-36 replicated the flaws of the old laws and was no less unconstitutional.

So, why did the Harper government bring in Bill C-36? Why did they spend endless dollars on lawyers, biased witnesses and other lackeys to appeal the findings of the trial that struck down the prostitution laws, or to defend the shameful Bill C-36? The answer is that they were pandering. Religious Christians and others did not want women to have the freedoms they now  have. These same donors to Mr. Harper and his party fought access to abortion that we now have. They fought against same sex marriage.
Mr. Harper pandered to these types of people when he fought court rulings on safe-site injections, medical marijuana and mandatory minimum sentences. He said he was being tough on crime. He lied. 

For example, if Mr. Harper was really interested in protecting women, as he claimed, he would have at least spoken out against wife beaters, dead-beat dads, lack of daycare or affordable housing, high tuition for women students from non-privileged backgrounds or the shortage of women’s shelters or shelters who accept family pets so the wife-beaters don’t use the pets as hostages. On these matters, and on matters like prison overcrowding and the wrongly convicted, or backlogged courts, or the cost of legal representation, he was silent. He talked about the rights of victims. What about the victims I just mentioned. Again, pandering to a base of donors and a base of voters. It was no different with the sex trade. He acted like he was promoting more missing women. No wonder he refused to call the inquiry into missing aboriginal women. The courts had already told him that the laws he was advocating were part of the cause. And then, with C-36, he doubled down. Under Mr. Harper human trafficking has become rampant. Tough on crime? Please. 

He and his so-called justice minister were even caught up in their own lies. Mr. MacKay and his officials were testifying in support of C-36. When he and his officials were asked about the constitutionality of C-36 being questioned extensively by reputable legal experts, they said there was no need to refer the law to the courts. Then, within minutes, when asked what acts were sex acts under the law, they said the courts would have to decide.

I have spoken elsewhere about Mr. MacKay’s record regarding sexual and minority harassment in the armed forces when he was minister. Mr. MacKay is a national disgrace, as is Rob Nicholson his predecessor as justice minister. I have spoken about him before as well. They have got part of the fate they deserved when their party was humiliated in the election. But enough about them. 

Now that Mr. Harper and his lackeys are out of office I believe this new Parliament can do better. They can tell Canadians to take their moral judgements and shove them. Instead, crack down on corporate crime. Crack down on tax evasion. Crack down on those traffic in undocumented foreign women as nannies or men as farm workers. Crack down on terrorists. Crack down on polluters. And like I said before, have the authorities help women who are forced to do what they do or stay where they are, and not on women who are are acting freely. Stay out of the private sex lives of consenting adults. Show some courage on that issue. The people will approve. Not all of them – but enough.

Tomorrow the new Parliament will meet for the first time and in 2 days the Throne Speech will be delivered. We may hear more of the new government’s pending decisions on what to do about the sex trade. They have already committed to repeal or amend C-36. I think the federal government is right if it calls for a task force report before telling Canadians under what circumstances they may be paid for sex acts. And the Supreme court also said that for any new law to be legal it must not be vague. It must tell me, as a sex worker, as a dominatrix, and as a woman, what I may or may not do in the privacy of my bedroom. I believe they must begin by setting a time-line for the repeal of Bill C-36, and call for its non-enforcement until that happens.

In other countries liberalization of the laws restricting the sex trade has been a success. In every area of society and the economy laws are broken and things happen underground, and the sex trade is no exception.  Yet, for their own purposes, governments or journalists cherry-pick the so-called evidence. The most blatant and frightening examples in the debate on C-36 were when Margaret Wente and Barbara Kay, two somewhat prominent conservative journalists, ignored even mentioning judge Himel’s exhaustive review of court tested evidence about other countries and cited a recent study each, neither of which were court tested, and both of which have been discredited, to support C-36. Their lack of integrity in debating this issue is frightening. They have sunk to the level of hate groups on the Internet. Fortunately both of them are old and I don’t think anyone takes them seriously any more, if they ever did, or if they have even heard of them.

But even more of a danger than lies and funded propaganda, is morality. We must never allow policies to be driven by morality – as opposed to the considerations of freedom, safety and privacy. That’s the Canada I want.

In the sex trade that means I can operate a brothel or dungeon in full view and with full protection of the law. It means that I can’t force anyone to enter or stay in the business against their will. It means I obey the labour laws obeyed by a restaurant or factory. It means I pay taxes. It means I do not assault anyone. It means my employees do nothing they are not comfortable with. It means my customers are free from harassment and their privacy is protected. It means I can advertise my services. It means that any restrictions on where I locate and where I advertise and who I hire are the same as, say, any other adult entertainment facility. It means that people who have a moral objection to my line of work can go to Hell. These are the same people, all too often, who objected to birth control, equal pay for women, homosexual relations, same sex marriage, interracial marriage and more. These are also the same people who in one breath condemn sex for sale and within hours buy it. If you want to know who is on that list, a good guide is to look at who is most sanctimonious.

I hope historians and other researchers will tell the stories of those who, for decades, fought for the freedoms and protections that sex workers and members of the LGBT community have been and are now in the process of achieving. The names that make the media are the tips of icebergs. Great changes take time, money, effort, perseverance, savvy and many good people to come about. 

As you hear the presentations over the next day or so and read the materials you are being provided, you will see that some things are getting better in Canada, and you will find out more about how and why that has come to pass, and share your findings. We are obviously at a landmark time in deciding the most crucial questions on issues relating to the sex trade.

But in my view the most crucial question should be asked the most often. The question is 2 words. It is the question at the heart of almost every level of almost every issue. Here are the 2 words. 

“Who decides?”

I want to thank you again for having this important conference and for inviting me to speak here tonight. 

OCLA 2014 Acceptance speech

I see some former clients in the audience. How was today’s caucus meeting? It’s good to be back in Ottawa. Maybe this time I won’t get thrown out. But in case I do, I want to first thank the Ontario Civil Liberties Association, executive and members alike, for this award and this event.

Yet, I have to admit I was surprised by the honour. After all, you guys believe in freedom. I believe in bondage. You like free speech. I gag my clients. You support equality. I preach female superiority. You promote humane treatment of prisoners. I torture mine. But why fuss over details?

Tonight I’m going to tell you about my journey through the criminal justice system and how and what I learned about civil liberties. The main point of my talk is that I did not travel and learn alone. I had and have a group of supporters who are steadfast. None lawyers. I will have some words about them. I will also talk about activists, activism, and those who govern us. And I have certainly had lawyers at my side. I’ll talk about them first. 

Val Scott, Amy Lebovitch and I probably got too much credit for striking down the prostitution laws. Our legal teams got too little credit. Let me drop a few names: Professor Alan Young, Marlys Edwardh, Ron Marzel, Stacey Nichols, Sabrina Pingitore, Kendra Reinhardt, Katrina Pacey, Daniel Sheppard and other lawyers, and law students, many law students, who fought for our side directly and indirectly. The amount of work they did was staggering. They were hardly paid, if paid. They could have made money hand over fist using their talents elsewhere. Their opposition, acting as lackeys for the governments of Canada and Ontario were overpaid, under-worked and accumulated defined pension credits indexed to inflation.

For 20 years I have been fighting, and my lawyers have been fighting on my behalf, against the laws that were struck down once and for all last year. In my youth I was too poor and lacked the support to contemplate challenging laws, or even defending myself in court. But in 1994, when I was raided in Thornhill that changed. I had support. I took a position. I was selling role play and refused to sell sex. Yet I was raided and charged as a prostitute. I, and I might add, my four fellow defendants, entered not guilty pleas. That alone got their charges dropped.  I was able to fight on.

David O’Connor represented me at my bail hearing and did a good job. The late Ken Danson began my defense preparations and Morris Manning took over from him. My supporters recommended that change and Ken was supportive. Ken told me, even after he was replaced, “Terri, you can’t plead guilty. Promise me you won’t”. Morris had the charges thrown out because they were too vague. Unfortunately that did not hold up on appeal. Murray Klippenstein took over. Murray has since risen to prominence. He worked with the highly regarded Charlie Campbell and was advised by Paula Rochman and assisted by Wendy Snelgrove. That was in part because I and my supporters felt that lawyers with a reputation as activists were going to be important as the matter became a high profile battle of attrition. During this time corporate lawyer George Callahan, a true gentleman and pit bull as the situation required, assisted me in ensuring my private affairs were in order. He also joined Klippenstein’s team. At trial the team was disqualified. They were ruled in conflict because they represented all the accused together, but only after the charges on those other than me were dropped.

Fortunately, Osgoode Professor Alan Young signed on as an advisor to the team and was ready to take over if the Klippenstein team was disqualified, and he did. He was assisted by lawyer Leah Daniels, who taught at Seneca, when my trial finally got under way in 1998. They spent all summer on the case and had a team of students assisting them. They flew in experts and prepared an elaborate defense.  

It was a barn-burner of a trial. All the major networks staked out the courthouse in Newmarket, wherever that is. The trial went on for weeks and the questions to be decided, as some reporters said, were as fundamental as those raised over a decade later in the recent Supreme Court decision – in my view more fundamental. The media treated it as front page news, and many of the spectators attended the entire trial for research purposes. Judge Bogusky had a landmark case and the country expected a landmark ruling after a twelve day trial, probably a long written decision which would work its way through the higher courts. He had a few weeks after the close of the trial before he gave his decision.

So what did Bogusky do? He gave a short oral decision. He said the reporters and spectators there had to make a living and were in a hurry to leave. He said there was no reason to rule on what was illegal between consenting adults in private that supported my conviction. The reasons he gave for convicting me were so weak that he was ridiculed in the media. No appeal court that was not rigged would uphold such a disgusting miscarriage of justice. He said the misuse of the search warrant was an understandable reaction of young bucks. Rosie DiManno finished off his reputation for good in her column in the Toronto Star. When I went for my sentencing I faced a broken old man who was angry and humiliated because he got what he deserved. He had become a laughing stock. But it was no laughing matter. He ran his court like it was the time of Stalin. To this day, I do not see a basis for the conviction. 

But wait, it gets worse. Professor Young and Paul Burstein did the appeal in 1999. Well, Judge Finlayson of the Ontario Court of Appeal wrote the worst decision in its history. Read it some time. It was so poor, lawyers told me, that it meant that a stripper or waitress could be charged as a prostitute and it was almost impossible to have a search warrant that could be challenged. It was so poor that judges afterward threw out prostitution and bawdy house charges simply because my conviction and appeal decision were such garbage that they became precedents to cite when acquitting. He lied about evidence. He saw absolutely no merit in my appeal. Lawyers were alarmed by his decision. So were judges. Ever wondered why prostitution convictions have fallen steadily since, despite a rising population and growth of the sex trade? Answer in part, Finlayson’s decision.

Some of this was pointed out by now Judge David Corbett, who sought leave to appeal to the Supreme Court. He worked with Lucy McSweeney and Timothy Banks, then an articling student, when David prepared his masterful factum in 2000. Unfortunately it was not heard. Corbett needed all his abilities just to find the words to explain why Finlayson’s decision was so appalling. The Crown’s Reply was as bad as Corbett’s appeal factum was good. No justice. But wait. Look at what happened in the years after.

Professor Young remained active for me. When I reopened in downtown Toronto just after my conviction he asked the police, in writing, if they had any objection to what I was doing, which was identical to Thornhill. Well, I was open four years and even gave media tours. No raid, no trial. What a contrast. In York Region the police tore my place apart, broke laws and so on. The Crown came at us with full force in a battle of attrition. The judge, and the appeal court, in a manner Stalin would have approved, produced a conviction and fined me $3,000. The legal fees and legal time amounted to a king’s ransom. The property values in the area of the raid fell by hundreds of thousands of dollars per house. I had no place to live and no means of support. Compare that to the Bondage Hotel in Toronto. No investigation. No raid. No trial. And so forth. Who, I ask you who, decides the difference?  And there were other civil liberties issues that arose during all this. But I have spoken about those in my memoirs.

But lawyers were not only at my side to fight charges. When I was in business again another lawyer, Pierre Cloutier, advised me on and assisted me in the handling of the administrative matters of my business, like registration and minute books and so forth. In 2011 I published my memoirs and got help from, you guessed it, a lawyer. Sender Herschorn and his staff were wonderful in ensuring I was within the law in writing the book, in what I said in the book and in advising me on drafts. He wrote to those mentioned in the drafts and sent them copies and made sure that no one had grounds to sue me. He also helped me with the writing and was encouraging throughout. He assisted me in private legal matters as well.

So you see, there is a great deal that lawyers can do for their clients in the sex trade, or those considering entering it, other than just react to charges or arrests. Lawyers can act proactively. So can non-lawyers with legal training, such as paralegals or law students or case managers from law offices.

All this moves me to speak about what I call secret rules that exist in the Canadian criminal justice system. Here are a few. Secret rule: search warrants are not just to gather evidence. Secret rule: each defendant must have his or her own lawyer to fight a charge, so if not rich likely cannot fight. Secret rule: legal aid given to those charged is not viable in court for a proper defense. Secret rule: if you do raise the funds or help to fight they come after you with all guns as punishment. Secret rule: your resources are better spent anticipating and on moving on after a bust and ensuring those busted are expendable. Secret rule: laws are left vague so authorities don’t have to account for their actions. Secret rule: constitutional challenges are so expensive that it can be decades before long due challenges are ever brought forward. The prostitution laws ruled unconstitutional in 2010, 2012 and 2013 were unconstitutional 20 or more years before they were challenged. Secret rule: there is window dressing to obscure all these secret rules. Things like credit for time served, legal aid, charges not standing up because of civil liberties violations are all cited by governments like Mr. Harper’s as evidence that the system favours those charged. 

Secret rules gave rise to a new organization: The Harper Brotherhood of Overpaid and Under-worked Trained Seals. Unless pressed by a scandal they do not speak out against wife beaters, workplace harassers, bullies of all types, dead beat dads, corporate thieves, polluters and I could go on. Organized crime has never had it easier because institutions and organizations that speak for people without means do not have the ear or heart of the Harper Brotherhood.  Anyone belonging to a union, or who is a sex worker, or who is part of an anti-poverty groups, or who belongs to an environmental group, or who is an intellectual, or even who is a judge is not being listened to. The Harper Brotherhood does not believe in accountability. They do not believe in transparency. They do not believe in open debate. They are creating a Canada where young people see laws made for the wrong reasons and so are all the more tempted not to respect or obey the law.

I say again and again that I cannot comment on the government’s policies on external affairs, the economy or on what it is doing to protect the environment. I only comment on their policies in areas where I am informed properly. But if what I see in those areas is going on elsewhere, I have to wonder how patriotic Mr. Harper and his brotherhood of trained seals are.

Is it patriotic if laws passed are unconstitutional, or contrary to Canada’s values as laid out by the Supreme Court? Is it patriotic to focus on length of sentences and ignore overcrowding in prisons? Is it patriotic to ignore the misuse of warrants? Is it patriotic to ignore the underfunding of legal aid? Ignore spousal abuse? Ignore the shortage of shelters for women, or of shelters that accept family pets so the wife beaters can’t use the family pet as a hostage?  Is it patriotic to be caught by surprise by the sexual harassment scandals about women and minorities in the armed forces and the RCMP? And, my friends, is it patriotic to tell women they can only have sex if they have it for free?

We have seen, in Canada, not too many years ago, morality and vice squads arrest drinkers, gamblers, gays, lesbians, readers of adult pornography, and sellers and buyers of sex acts in the absence of a list of prohibited acts. 

Since then we have also seen changes. Now, governments sell alcohol, sell lottery tickets, gays are openly gay, lesbians are openly lesbian, adult pornography is part of cable television packages and now, thanks to Bill C-36, legalization of the sale of sex acts has been formalized. Maybe one day, we will even get a list of what constitutes a sex act under Bill C-36. Until then, we may have to learn by trial and error.

These freedoms did not fall from the sky. They were fought for. But by whom? I dedicated my memoirs to The Dozen. None are lawyers. They are citizens who saw wrongs being done to someone they knew. So, first of all, they were mad at those who did it. Second, it alerted them to the broader issues and they got angrier. Third, they realized they could make a difference individually and collectively. Here is what I learned from them, and from the lawyers and activists with whom I have fought.

If there is a wrong committed by the authorities, find the enemy of your enemy and become their friend. Find people with money, time, numbers or compromising information. But above all, above all, make sure the effort is in the hands of capable, reliable people. We don’t have lawyers doing court cases only because they care. They also have training on how to win and create change. The same must be true of the activists. I am an activist, but I am not a professional organizer or administrator. But I have around me people who have track records not only of activism, and maybe not even that, but of corporate success, community leadership, academic and administrative expertise and political experience. Some have money. Some have time. The lesson is to put together a winning team to guide and even head the committed activists.

Let me also put it this way. If something is wrong and you want to do something about it, don’t be shy or ashamed to ask everyone to ask everyone else. If the cause is just you will be surprised at how often you get what you want simply by asking for it, asking for it and asking for it. When enough good, capable, reliable people are asked enough they will attract more such people. 

Let me come back to the lawyers for a moment. I have had about 20 lawyers represent me and/or my fellow defendants or plaintiffs. One of them, Professor Alan Young, should get the Order of Canada. Another, David Corbett, became Canada’s first openly gay judge. Most of the others have distinguished themselves in ways too numerous to mention. But they all have had something in common, something very important. They fought for what was right, not profitable or career enhancing. Lawyers will devote part of their time to the high ideals of their profession, if asked. Lawyers get angry about some things too. I have many recollections of how incensed many of those representing me were at how the authorities have behaved. It is good to have a skilled and angry lawyer on your side, and one skill that is crucial is that he or she works well with the activists and supporters.

Now, sadly, one lawyer is the polar opposite of all that. Former justice minister Rob Nicholson. I want to tell you about one single moment in his life. I think it was a defining moment for both him and Canada. In March 2012 the Ontario Court of Appeal basically upheld Justice Himel’s 2010 decision striking down the key laws against prostitution. A few weeks later Nicholson stood up in the House of Commons and said something to the effect that he was pleased to say that the government would appeal to the Supreme Court and would not discuss the matter further until the court had ruled.

Now let me tell you why I think that was a defining moment.  

Reason number one. I think he knew there were merits to what Himel’s decision contained, merits that he could have acted upon immediately – like allowing sex workers to hire off-duty police as security or work in groups from fixed locations, or support spouses and children who lived with them. I think he knew the laws were void for vagueness and could have made them clearer and fairer. I think he knew that other laws could, as Himel said, be used to control the worst aspects of sex work. And I think he knew the laws themselves created dangers for women and resulted in deaths. I think he knew all this yet, with pleasure, as he put it, appealed the whole package.

Reason number two. He knew or should have known that it was against every principle his party stood for to lump consenting harmless adult behaviour in private, like women paying younger men for sex, men keeping women, women like me who enjoy punishing and humiliating men who pay me to do it, in with trafficked or abused women. That is not allowing for individual autonomy and responsibility for one’s own decisions. I think he knew all this, yet, with pleasure, he appealed.

Reason number three. If I am wrong about the first two reasons it was definitely an even more defining moment. Perhaps he actually believed his stated position that the laws were constitutional, and that no changes were needed. If that is true, if he believed that nothing being said by all the judges, experts, sex workers and others had any merit at all  he is a mental defective.

So, my friends, it was a defining moment because it was then and there that the justice minister proved himself and his government to be either liars or mental defectives. Three levels of court are there to show it. 

Did, Nicholson, the country’s highest legal official, who swore to defend our constitution forget, or even know, what is involved in mounting a constitutional challenge? How many has he done? He should try it some time and see what it involves. For instance, big bucks. Add to that tons of volunteer legal time. The work involved with the experts. Try 3 years of hearings and related preparation. Try dealing with government lawyers who do not hesitate to offer crap as evidence and argument. If you don’t believe it was crap ask Judge Himel and the Supreme Court. Try to deal with a government that orders their lawyers to make it go away by any means necessary and then orders them to appeal, when there are no grounds to appeal, simply to make the issue go away. A government that has no regard for Charter challenges. A government that dismissed with a wave of a hand tens of thousands of pages of court tested evidence that should have been an alarm bell to any reasonably intelligent person.

Then try dealing with a portion of the media who in one breath points to the downsides of the sex trade, whatever that is, while turning a blind eye to the finding of the courts that the very laws they are fighting to retain are largely the cause of those evils. Try dealing with commentators who bring in obscure new studies or reports, not tested in court, to attack legalization of the sex trade, while ignoring the findings of a virtual 3 year public inquiry, with evidence tested in court, that resulted in the Himel decision and what it had to say about other countries. Barbara Kay and Margaret Wente are two recent examples of such cherry pickers who don’t even say in their columns if they have even read the decision. Rosie DiManno said “read the damn decision”, out of frustration with such lousy journalism.

Mr. Harper has replaced Mr. Nicholson with Mr. MacKay, the former defense minister. Women and minorities being harassed in the armed forces is more of a problem than enemy fire. That will be the MacKay legacy. Let me speak for a moment about Peter MacKay. He recently said he was not aware of sexual harassment in his party or in parliament and so forth. He of course conveniently forgets to mention a few things. One is the problem of rape and sexual harassment in the armed forces during the time he was defense minister, as I have just mentioned. It is also an epidemic in the RCMP. But with Vic Toews as minister, who is surprised? But why be surprised at any of this. Elmer MacKay, Peter’s father, was a prominent conservative. When it comes to father and son ask around. Ask Karlheinz Schreiber. Ask David Orchard. Ask Belinda Stronach. Ask Brian Mulroney’s former staffers. Ask the women in armed forces about the culture of blame the victim, blame the women who come forward. Ask around about the fecklessness of the Integrity Commissioner’s office. Ask about the iron grip the government has taken on the internal audit process and destroyed it. Ask about Mr. MacKay’s appearances before the Senate and Commons justice committees where he skated around legitimate questions about C-36. Why didn’t he get thrown out? And this, this is the guy who is talking about zero tolerance for abusive behaviour towards women? Good heavens, he is the only guy in Ottawa who doesn’t know what is going on if he is being honest. His notion of accountability and zero tolerance would scare Joseph Stalin. Well, enough about Mr. MacKay. Believe me, you’ll be hearing plenty more about him and his in the months to come.

Well, regardless of what he knows I also know a few things. I and my supporters and many others have been asking around. You wouldn’t believe what I am being told and shown. I will not take up any more time tonight about what we have been told and provided with, except to say that I will not accept criticism if I, and my fellow activists, refuse to keep to the high road in the debate on the new sex trade laws or in dealing with this government and its supporters. The government and its trained seals hit bottom long ago. They deserve everything they are going to get. They don’t deserve fair treatment. If sex workers are worried about the code of confidentiality, and we are, we must remember that the Harper Brotherhood has disregarded all sorts of codes of honour and we should not, in a fight for the lives of our sisters, feel compelled to hold ourselves to a higher standard. 

Canada faces some threats from terrorists and hate groups. Our men and women in uniform are fighting for us here and abroad. We know what they are fighting against. But let me respectfully say to Canadians what I think our troops are fighting for as well. They stand for security, yes. But security for what? I think they are fighting for our freedoms, meaning, yes, our civil liberties. We disrespect our citizens in uniform when we allow people with power to act arbitrarily, the way Mr. Harper and his lackeys are doing with the sex trade. We disrespect them when we allow Mr. Harper’s government to disregard prominent citizens – judges, professors, leaders in unions, churches, community organizations and other bodies in society that speak for people without money or political power.

So my friends we must all be soldiers, and each do what we can to ensure our governments at all levels are held to a standard of accountability that ensures they respect truth and properly justify their actions. For that matter, governments can hold other governments to such a standard. For example, Vancouver wants the federal government to refer C-36 to the Supreme Court and has indicated that C-36 will work against the guidelines of the Supreme Court decision

In Ontario, Premier Kathleen Wynne and Toronto Mayor John Tory must now speak. She has a majority government in Canada’s largest province. He was just elected mayor of Canada’s largest city. I believe how they act, not just speak, in response to C-36, will define their level of integrity. 

Thank you again so very much for this honour, and for having me here tonight.

PRESS RELEASE

This afternoon I testified before the Senate Committee on Justice and Constitutional Affairs. I gave my speech and then was ejected from the question and answer session for failing to stop speaking when the Chair asked me to. I apologize for losing my temper. I was barely able to read my speech because I was so angry at the government for parading victims with repeated irrelevant information and then organizations who were shilling for government handouts on which they are dependent. The shameful use of victims by the government in this process, and their disregard for life by ignoring court findings, refusing to listen to their own legal staff and refusing to answer questions from legitimate sources made me snap. I have already been told that people are sympathetic to the points I made and even to my outburst. They seemed to agree that the government can’t handle the truth. They have repeatedly shown disrespect for various institutions, processes and persons. The truth will win out.

Speech to Senate Committee

Prime Minister Harper called me again. He offered to appoint me to the Senate. As a government whip. I turned him down. I might run into former clients on Parliament Hill.

I am the Bedford in Bedford Versus Canada, the constitutional challenge striking down the prostitution laws. I know the sex trade in Canada as well as anyone. I learned about the issues by working in and managing almost all aspects of the sex trade over 30 years. I have fought the prostitution laws for many of these years. I have been in jail because of the laws. I have been in court as a defendant or appellant more times than I care to remember. I am Canada’s most famous dominatrix and perhaps Canada’s most famous prostitute. I was in attendance for most of the sessions of the 3 years of the constitutional challenge. So, maybe I know what I am talking about.

In these brief remarks I will make only a few points of my own. You have a library of evidence against Bill C-36, and I don’t want to repeat or submit briefs saying what so many others have said so well.

First of all senators, when it comes to consenting adults, the state has no business in the bedrooms of the nation.

Second, the national debate currently under way has not given enough attention to sex trade workers who don’t want to exit and are there by choice. If you ask me today I will tell you about some of them. These women, and indeed male sex workers, should not be grouped in with those who want out.

Third, what exactly is Bill C-36 supposed to outlaw? What exactly would be illegal between consenting adults in private for money? The response from some supporters of Bill C-36 are words to the effect that “everyone knows” or “the courts would have to decide”. If everyone knows, why not answer the question? If the courts have to decide, why not refer the bill there immediately?

Fourth, why does the government claim they are making the purchase of sex illegal. If it was legal to purchase sex before, where did all the John Schools come from? This new law changes nothing in that regard.

Fifth. The Justice Minister was wrong to call the sex trade degrading. The clients are there by choice. They are half the transaction. Many are pillars of the community, often business leaders, professionals and politicians.  Most sex trade workers do not consider their work degrading. Lumping them in with those who want out is not acceptable in a free society.

Sixth, those who ask if you want your daughter to be a sex worker might also ask if you want your daughter working in any number of poorly paid, dangerous or menial jobs while getting sexually harassed in the bargain. And while we are at it, I want my daughter to work in the sex trade, but it should be her choice. Not only that, I may want your daughter to work in the sex trade and for it to be her choice. If you don’t like that I suggest you mind your own business and move to a country where the choices of women in the bedroom are controlled by the government.

Senators, it is bad policy to direct scarce law enforcement resources to stop consenting adult behaviour in private – while tax evaders, wife beaters, terrorists and what have you go unpunished.

So Senators, please don’t allow Bill C-36 to pass. Stand up for your country first. Use laws you have to help those most in need, in and out of the sex trade.  

Senators, please, please don’t allow Parliament to force Canadian women to only have sex for free.

Thank you.

Dominatrix Writes Premier

The Honourable Kathleen Wynne
Premier of Ontario

Dear Premier,

I am the Bedford in Bedford Versus Canada, the case that overturned Canada’s prostitution laws. Three court decisions, culminating in the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in December 2013, confirmed that these laws were unconstitutional.
Prime Minister Harper was elected with a majority government. He has recently introduced Bill C-36 into Parliament to make illegal the purchase of sex acts, whatever that means, advertising of the sale of sex and numerous other related activities. I and many legal experts, informed activists, sex trade workers and concerned citizens believe the new bill is not constitutional.
The opposition parties in the House of Commons have asked that the Government refer the bill to the Supreme Court immediately after a final vote in the House because of this concern. To date the Government has refused.
You too were elected with a majority government. If and when the bill becomes law you can ask The Ontario Court of Appeal to render an opinion on whether it is constitutional. You can indicate any time before that that you will do so. You can also instruct crown attorneys not to lay charges under the bill, even in advance of it passing, and not to do so at least until a final court decision, possibly the Supreme Court, has ruled on whether the law, or its various parts, is constitutional.
I am asking that you do to do both. I am asking you to do both in the coming days. I am asking that you not say this is a federal matter. I am asking that you not say you need to study the matter. I am asking you not to delegate this decision. If you need more information please contact me and I will have eminent Canadians get in touch with you.
Already the horrible results of C-36 are being seen. Already some sex workers are leaving the safety of agencies and going back underground, meaning working alone without security or a safe location. Already some clients are seeking anonymity and secrecy, preventing screening and accountability. There are other terrible consequences looming and in progress. Premier, you know this means more murdered women at the hands of sexual predators – because of C-36. A simple search of the Internet will provide you with the opinions of lawyers, legislators, academics and the sex workers themselves of the dangers that C-36 creates – constitutional or not.

I know you realize the freedom that you enjoy in your personal life was once at issue as well, and were opposed by the same segments of society now behind C-36. Same sex marriage, same sex benefits and even same sex relationships were illegal not long ago, and some people would make them illegal again if they thought they could get away with it. Now the proposed requirement that women only have sex for free, that men can be entrapped, that local authorities will have unreasonable discretion, that freedom of speech concerning advertising the legal sale of sex will be threatened, and that personal friends and associates of women and men who sell sex but who are not involved in the business but can be implicated, is surely alarming to you both personally and as my Premier.
I am sharing this letter with the public. I believe they have a right to know that you have the option to act and have been asked.
I congratulate you on your election and thank you in advance for standing up for the people of Ontario against the appalling conduct of our federal government.

Yours truly,

Terri-Jean Bedford

Dominatrix Responds to New Prostitution Law

Unlike the government I have read the document in question and had it carefully explained to me by experts. The new law would basically prohibit the purchasing of and advertising of sex for sale. It would also penalize persons who were in an exploitative relationship with sex trade workers. Mr. McKay called sex work degrading and said other means must also be added by other bodies to enable women to get out of the sex trade.

I see now why Mr. Harper told McKay to table the bill while he was out of the country. The bill is a rework of the old legislation and will fare no better. We may not even need a constitutional challenge to gut it. It spits in the face of the courts and judges will know this. It repeats the legal and safety shortcomings of the old laws. It does not even define what is and what is not a sex act. As a dominatrix I need to know this so I can punish Mr. Harper for such incompetence.

Mr. McKay called the sex trade degrading. Who the hell is he to tell women they have to only have sex for free? Who the hell is he to tell consenting adults what they can and cannot do in private? How can he stand for a ban on advertising an activity that is legal? I have news for him. Many women love being sex trade workers. Many men who visit sex trade workers, which include some well known members of his own party, are prominent and highly regarded members of society who love their families.

This is the same government that kept insisting that the old laws were constitutional and should be kept. Are we going to believe them now? Neither he nor Mr. McKay nor the dumped Mr. Nicholson would say if they had read the decision of Justice Himel which the Supreme Court endorsed. It said there are plenty of existing laws which address the worst aspects of prostitution, aside from the ones she struck down.

Politics is the oldest profession. Mr. Harper and Mr. McKay have trumped up incompetent and unethical legislation so they can blame the courts when all restrictions on the sex trade, as distinct from other forms of business, are finally removed. Just like the rest of his “Tough on Crime Agenda” this is a scam and ignores real measures that could be taken to protect Canadian women. Organized crime, human traffickers and exploitative pimps are celebrating today. Mr. Harper is encouraging the women in the sex trade to go underground, where these evil people lie in wait. 

Government Prostitution Survey Results – A Message From Terri-Jean Bedford

The survey is a scam. I say that despite the fact that the respondents agreed with us that the sale of sex should remain legal. The respondents were also not decisively against purchase of sex or in favour of charging all the associates of sex workers. So even this rigged survey, assuming we are being correctly informed about the response, does not give clear direction to the government. I say the survey was rigged and a scam for a number of reasons. Here are some of them. For one, who drew up the questions? Why a question asking if the government should tell consenting adults what they can do in private for money? Why wasn’t there a question asking what should be included in the definition of a sex act or sex? Why wasn’t there a question about which As to criminalizing the purchase of sex, I am including below an open letter from many leading Canadian intellectuals familiar with the issues at hand. I ask you to read the letter. Look as well at who received it and who sent it. It should convince you that if the government does introduce the so-called Nordic approach it will ensure that Mr. Harper and his ministers will be seen as cowards only looking out for themselves by doing what organized crime wants them to do: meaning preventing women from protecting themselves, ensuring they can only have sex for free and denying consenting adults in private basic liberty. We can do better than that. Ask the Supreme Court.

OPEN LETTER CALLING FOR DECRIMINALIZATION
OF SEX WORK IN CANADA AND
OPPOSITION TO CRIMINALIZING
THE PURCHASING OF SEX

Right Hon. Stephen Harper, Prime Minister, Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada,
Hon. Tom Mulcair, Leader of the Official Opposition, the New Democratic Party of Canada,
Hon. Justin Trudeau, Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada,
Mr. Jean-Francois Fortin, Interim Leader of the Bloc Québécois,
Hon. Elizabeth May, Leader of the Green Party of Canada,

Dear Sirs and Madam,

Re: Evidence-Based Call for Decriminalization of Sex Work in Canada and Opposition to Criminalizing the Purchasing of Sex
We, the undersigned, are profoundly concerned that the Government of Canada is considering the introduction of new legislation to criminalize the purchasing of sex. The proposed legislation is not scientifically grounded and evidence strongly suggests that it would recreate the same social and health-related harms of current criminalization. We join other sex worker, research, and legal experts across the country and urge the Government of Canada to follow the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision and support decriminalization of sex work as a critical evidence-based approach to ensuring the safety, health, and human rights of sex workers.

A large body of scientific evidence from Canada,[1] Sweden and Norway (where clients and third parties are criminalized), and globally[2] clearly demonstrates that criminal laws targeting the sex industry have overwhelmingly negative social, health, and human rights consequences to sex workers, including increased violence and abuse, stigma, HIV and inability to access critical social, health and legal protections. These harms disproportionately impact marginalized sex workers including female, Indigenous and street-involved sex workers, who face the highest rates of violence and murder in our country. In contrast, in New Zealand, since the passage of a law to decriminalize sex work in 2003, research and the government’s own evaluation have documented marked improvements in sex workers’ safety, health, and human rights.[3]

Therefore, we call on the Government of Canada to join with global leaders, community, researchers and legal experts in rejecting criminalization regimes, including those that criminalize the purchase of sexual services, and instead support the decriminalization of sex work in Canada as scientifically-grounded and necessary to ensuring the safety, health, and human rights of sex workers. Below, we briefly outline our key concerns.

1. Criminalization of any aspect of sex work undermines access to critical safety, health and legal protections: The science is unequivocal that where sex work operates within a criminalized and policed environment –whether targeting sex workers, their working conditions, or the people they work with, for, or hire (clients, managers, bodyguards, or other third parties)– sex workers are placed in an adversarial relationship with police and are unable to access critical social, health and legal protections. Both peer review research and the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry Report have shown that within criminalization environments, stigma and discrimination of sex workers are major barriers for sex workers to reporting violence and abuse to authorities and accessing other critical health and social supports both in Canada and globally [4] In the official evaluation of the ban on purchasing sex in Sweden, sex workers clearly reported that the law increased police scrutiny, stigma and discrimination, and deterred reporting to police.[5] In contrast, the New Zealand Prostitution Reform Act (2003) placed the human rights and occupational health and safety of sex workers as the central goal of their law reform; and government’s own evaluation showed sex workers were significantly more likely to report abuse to authorities following decriminalization.[6]

2. Enforcement prohibiting communication in public spaces between sex workers and their clients directly elevates risks for violence, abuse and other health and social harms. Since the Communication Law was enacted in 1985 to reduce “public nuisance”, the number of sex workers who have gone missing and been murdered in Canadian cities has escalated dramatically, with disproportionate numbers of Indigenous women. Evidence has consistently shown that in order for sex workers and their clients to avoid police detection, sex workers have to work alone, in isolated areas and rush into vehicles before they have the opportunity to screen prospective clients or negotiate the terms of transactions, severely limiting their ability to avoid dangerous clients or refuse unwanted services (e.g. unprotected sex).[7] The Supreme Court of Canada identified client screening as one of the most vital tools available to sex workers to protect their safety and health.[8] In Sweden and Norway where laws criminalize the purchasing of sex, research has shown that enforcement targeting clients still forces sex workers to operate in clandestine locations to avoid police, increases their insecurity,[9] and places them at continued and increased risk for violence, abuse and other health-related harms, including HIV infection.[10] A report commissioned by City of Oslo in Norway (2012) found that the rate of strangulation and threat with a deadly weapon of sex workers had increased substantially in the three years since the implementation of the criminalization of clients.[11]

3. Criminalization of any aspect of sex work hinders sex worker’s ability to establish safer workspaces, to work collectively, and engage third parties who can increase their safety. Both the Supreme Court of Canada and the two lower courts in Bedford clearly highlighted access to indoor spaces as a critical safety measure, based on two decades of evidence from local and international sex workers, academics, and legal experts.[12]  In Canada, an evaluation of safer indoor work spaces in 2012 within supportive low-income housing in Vancouver demonstrated that when sex workers have opportunities to move off-street, they can increase their control over their working conditions and are able to adopt safety and security measures that protect their health, safety and overall well-being.[13]  Safer indoor spaces also provide a critical connection with social, health, and legal supports, including accessing police protections in cases of violence or abuse. However, in a law enforcement environment where clients remain targets for arrest, criminalization would continue to prevent sex workers from bringing clients indoors to safer indoor spaces; thereby reproducing the same harms as the current criminalized model. By contrast, in New Zealand and New South Wales, Australia, where sex work is fully decriminalized, sex workers have access to safer indoor work spaces and have increased control over the conditions of their work.[14]

4. Criminalizing the purchasing of sex does not reduce or eliminate prostitution. Following the ban on purchasing of sex, a number of evaluations of the criminalized regime from Sweden have found no evidence that the overall number of sex workers was reduced.[15] Of note, public health researchers in New Zealand have repeatedly estimated the size of the sex industry in 5 locations, and compared with 1999 (prior to decriminalization), the data show no increase in overall numbers of sex workers.[16]

5. Criminalizing any aspect of sex work undermines efforts to address human trafficking. The conflation of sex trafficking and sexual exploitation with sex work (the exchange of sex for money among consenting adults) undermines efforts to address these critical human rights issues. In the US and increasingly in Canada, funds intended for use to address human trafficking have been misused on anti-prostitution enforcement efforts. In two separate governmental evaluations of the Swedish criminalization regime, police reported that it creates an obstacle to prosecuting “traffickers and coercive pimps”.[17] Furthermore, scientific evidence and the experience of anti-trafficking organizations suggest that criminalizing the purchase of sex renders it more difficult to assist individuals in situations of coercion and abuse.[18]

Canadian researchers and academics call for evidence-based policies that are consistent with safety, health and human rights for sex workers and communities.

We are calling on the federal government to demonstrate leadership when addressing these challenging issues by promoting evidence-based laws and policies that protect the safety, health and human rights of sex workers. We encourage Canada to adopt the decriminalization of sex work recommendations of the World Health Organization, UNFPA, UNAIDS Advisory Group on HIV and Sex Work, and the Global Commission on HIV and the Law.[19] We invite you to work together with sex workers, researchers and legal experts to develop evidence-based policy approaches that promote the safety, health, and human rights of sex workers.

We look forward to your response.

Signed,
1.        Gillian Abel, PhD | University of Otago | Christchurch, NZ
2.        Barry Adam, PhD | University of Windsor | Windsor, ON
3.        Anu Aggarwal, PhD
4.        Laura Agustin, PhD | The Naked Anthropologist
5.        Aziza Ahmed, MA, JD | Northeastern University School of Law | Boston, MA
6.        Michel Alary, MD, PhD | Université Laval | Québec, QC
7.        Sarah Allan, LLB/JD | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
8.        Paul Amar, PhD | University of California | Santa Barbara, CA
9.        Solanna Anderson, MA | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
10.        Elena Argento, MPH | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
11.        Robert Argue, PhD | Professor Emeritus, Ryerson University | Sudbury, ON
12.        Chris Atchison, MA | University of Victoria | Vancouver, BC
13.        Cheryl Auger, MA, PhD (c) | Political Science Department, University of Toronto | Toronto, ON
14.        Jacenta Bahri, MA
15.        Brook Baker, JD | Northeastern University School of Law | Boston, MA
16.        Natasha Bakht, LLM | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
17.        Gillian Balfour, PhD | Trent University | Peterborough, ON
18.        Nandinee Bandyopadhyay, MA
19.        Stefan Baral, MD | Centre for Public Health and Human Rights | Toronto, ON
20.        Julie Bates, MSc | Urban Realists Planning & Occupational Health & Safety Consultants | Sydney, AU
21.        Katharine Bausch, MA | Trent University | Toronto, ON
22.        Ahmed Bayoumi, MD, FRCPC | Toronto, ON
23.        Calum Bennachie, PhD | New Zealand Prostitute’s Collective | Wellington, NZ
24.        Darcie Bennett, PhD | Pivot Legal Society | Vancouver, BC
25.        Cecilia Benoit, PhD | University of Victoria | Victoria, BC
26.        Benjamin Berger, JSD | Osgoode Hall Law School | Toronto, ON
27.        Rachel Berger, PhD | Concordia University | Montreal, QC
28.        Elizabeth Bernstein, PhD | Barnard College | New York, NY
29.        Manjima Bhattacharjya, PhD | Mumbai, Maharashtra
30.        Steven Bittle, PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
31.        Gary Bloch, MD | University of Toronto | Toronto, ON
32.        John Boan, PhD | University of Regina | Regina, SK
33.        Mandy Bonisteel, RN, OMC | George Brown College | Toronto, ON
34.        Colin Bonnycastle, MSW | University of Manitoba | Thompson, ON
35.        Suzanne Bouclin, PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
36.        Pierre Boulos, PhD | University of Windsor | Windsor, ON
37.        Raven Bowen, MA | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
38.        Jason Boyd, PhD | Ryerson University | Toronto, ON
39.        Mark Boyd, MD | University of New South Wales | Sydney, AU
40.        Neil Boyd, LLM | Professor, School of Criminology, Simon Fraser University | Vancouver, BC
41.        Borce Bozhinov, MD | STAR-STAR | Skopje, Macedonia
42.        Ella Bradley, BSW | University of Windsor | Chatham, ON
43.        Suzanne Brissette, MD | Centre hospitalier de l’université de Montréal | Montreal, QC
44.        Deborah Brock, PhD | Associate Professor, York University | Toronto, ON
45.        Chris Bruckert, PhD | Associate Professor, Department of Criminology, University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
46.        Zabrina Brumme, PhD | Simon Fraser University | Vancouver, BC
47.        Laurence Brunet, MSc | McGill University | Montreal, QC
48.        Chloe Brushwood Rose, PhD | Associate Professor, Faculty of Education, York University | Toronto, ON
49.        Licia Brussa, PhD | TAMPEP International Foundation | Amsterdam, Netherlands
50.        Katherine Burress, RN | Casey House | Toronto, ON
51.        Karen Busby, JD, LLM | Faculty of Law, University of Manitoba | Winnipeg, MB
52.        Denton Callander, PhD | University of New South Wales | Sydney, AU
53.        Kenneth Camargo, MD, PhD | Rio de Janeiro State University | Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
54.        Thais Camargo, MSc
55.        Deanna Campbell, MA, JD (c) | Vancouver, BC
56.        Anna Carastathis, PhD | California State University Los Angeles | Los Angeles, CA
57.        John Carlsleym MD, CM, MSc, CCFP, FRCPC | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
58.        Sarah Carlsley, MSc | Toronto, ON
59.        Marie-Eve Carrier-Moisan, PhD | Carleton University | Ottawa, ON
60.        Patrizia Carrieri, PhD | INSERM | Marseille, France
61.        Claire Carter, PhD | University of Regina | Regina, SK
62.        Connie Carter, PhD | Canadian Drug Policy Coalition | Victoria, BC
63.        Sheila Cavanagh, PhD | York University | Toronto, ON
64.        Helen Cerigo, MSc | Toronto, ON
65.        Yao Chi Hang, MA | Chinese University of Hong Kong | Hong Kong, China
66.        Alexandra Choby, PhD | University of Alberta | Edmonton, AB
67.        Sandra Ko Hon Chu, LLM | Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network | Toronto, ON
68.        Alison Clancey, MSW | Vancouver, BC
69.        Deborah Clipperton, MA, CP | York University | Toronto, ON
70.        Claudia Coeli, MD, PhD | Universidade Federal de Rio de Janeiro | Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
71.        Marisa Collins, MD, MDSc, CCFP, FCFP | Pemberton, BC
72.        Jason Congdon, MSc | School of Communication, Simon Fraser University | Vancouver, BC
73.        Sandra Connely, MSc | Niagara Falls, ON
74.        Bruno Cornellier, PhD | University of Winnipeg | Winnipeg, MB
75.        Sonia Correa, MSc | Abai/ SPW | Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
76.        Patrice Corriveau, PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
77.        Anna-Louise Crago, PhD (c) | Trudeau Scholar, University of Toronto | Toronto, ON
78.        Marion Crook, PhD | Gibsons, BC
79.        Joanne Csete, PhD, MPH | Columbia University | London, UK
80.        Anne Dagenais Guertin, MD | Gatineau, QC
81.        Isolde Daiski, Ed.D | Toronto, ON
82.        Darcy Dalgaard, M.Ed | Victoria, BC
83.        Amber Dean, PhD | McMaster University | Hamilton, ON
84.        Kathleen Deering, PhD | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
85.        Sonja Dolinsek, MA | Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin | Berlin, Germany
86.        Basil Donovan, MD | Sydney Hospital | Sydney, AU
87.        Liza Doyle, MPH | University of New South Wales | Sydney, AU
88.        Putu Duff, MSc, PhD (c) | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
89.        Richard Elliot, LLM | Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network | Toronto, ON
90.        Deanna England, MA, BA (Hons.) | University of Winnipeg | Winnipeg, MB
91.        Danya Fast, PhD | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
92.        Maritza Felices-Luna, PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
93.        Shawna Ferris, PhD | University of Manitoba | Winnipeg, MB
94.        Thomas Fleming, PhD | Professor of Criminology | Wilfred Laurier University | Toronto, ON
95.        Anna Forbes, MSS | Kensington, MD
96.        Juliana Francis, MSc | Movimiento de Mujeres Feministas | Managua, Nicaragua
97.        Margot Francis, PhD | Brock University | Toronto, ON
98.        Jennifer Fraser, PhD | Ryerson University | Toronto, ON
99.        May Friendman, PhD | Ryerson University | Toronto, ON
100.        Caspar Friesen, BSc, MD | University of British Columbia | Victoria, BC
101.        Robert Gaucher, PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
102.        Mary Gavan, PhD | Vancouver, BC
103.        Leah George, MD, MSc | Calgary, AB
104.        Andree Germain, MSW | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
105.        Mark Gilbert, MD, MHSc | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
106.        Fiona Gold, RN | BC Centre for Disease Control | Vancouver, BC
107.        Shira Goldenberg, PhD | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
108.        Tonantzin Goncalves, PhD | UNISINOS | Porto Alegra, Brazil
109.        Todd Gordon, PhD | Society, Culture and Environment, Laurier University Brantford | Toronto, ON
110.        Kelly Gorkoff, PhD | University of Winnipeg | Winnipeg, MB
111.        Andrew Gray, MD | McGill University | Montreal, QC
112.        Devon Grayson, MLIS | Vancouver, BC
113.        Pauline Greenhill, PhD | University of Winnipeg | Winnipeg, MB
114.        Silvia Guillemi, MD | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
115.        Gordon Guyatt, MD, MSc | McMaster University | Dundas, ON
116.        Devon Haag, MSc | Vancouver, BC
117.        Thomas Haig, PhD | Université du Québec à Montréal | Montreal, QC
118.        Helga Hallgrimsdottir, PhD | University of Victoria | Victoria, BC
119.        Julie Ham, MSW, PhD (c) | Monash University, Melbourne AU
120.        Stacey Hannem, PhD | Department of Criminology, Wilfred Laurier University | Branford, ON
121.        Ross Harvey, FMP | Mission, BC
122.        Ashley Heaslip, MD
123.        Robert Heynen, PhD | Department of Communications Studies, York University | Toronto, ON
124.        Heidi Hoefinger, PhD | John Jay College, City University of New York | New York, NY
125.        Robert Hogg, PhD | Simon Fraser University / BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
126.        Kirby Huminuik, PhD (c) | Vancouver, BC
127.        Sarah Hunt, PhD | Camosun College | Victoria, BC
128.        Mary Ives, RN, MHS | Fraser Health Authority | Chilliwack, BC
129.        Shahnaz Islamova, MSc | Tais Plus NGO | Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
130.        Mikael Jansson, PhD | University of Victoria | Victoria, BC
131.        Leslie Jeffrey, PhD | University of New Brunswick St. John | Saint John, NB
132.        Bryan Jones, PhD | Simon Fraser University | Vancouver, BC
133.        Darlene Juschka, PhD | University of Regina | Regina, SK
134.        Angela Kaida, PhD | Simon Fraser University | Vancouver, BC
135.        Lara Karaian, PhD | Institute of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Carleton University | Pakenham, ON
136.        Mohammad Karamouzian, MSc | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
137.        Lisa Kelly, JD, JSD (c) | Harvard Law School | Vancouver, BC
138.        Kamala Kempadoo, PhD | Professor, York University | Toronto, ON
139.        Perry Kendall, MD | Victoria, BC
140.        Lisa Kerr, JD, LLM, JSD (c) | New York University | Vancouver, BC
141.        Thomas Kerr, PhD | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS/ University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
142.        Ummni Khan, JD, MA, LLM, SJD | Carleton University | Ottawa, ON
143.        Julie Kille, BScN, RN | Vancouver, BC
144.        Alexandra King, MD | Vancouver, BC
145.        Malcolm King, PhD | Simon Fraser University | Vancouver, BC
146.        Gary Kinsman, PhD | Department of Sociology, Laurentian University | Sudbury, ON
147.        Mieke Koehoorn, PhD | Vancouver, BC
148.        Steven Kohm, PhD | University of Winnipeg | Winnipeg, MB
149.        Kat Kolar, PhD (c) | University of Toronto | Toronto, ON
150.        Rodney Knight, MSc, PhD (c) | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
151.        Andrea Krusi, MSc | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
152.        Marc Lafrance, PhD | Concordia University | Montreal, QC
153.        Tammy Landau, PhD | Ryerson University | Toronto, ON
154.        Jeffrey Langer, MA | Laurentian University | Sudbury, ON
155.        Rosanna Langer, PhD | Laurentian University | Sudbury, ON
156.        Jennifer Lavoie, PhD | Wilfred Laurier University | Brantford, ON
157.        Stephanie Law, MJ | McGill University | Montreal, QC
158.        Tuulia Law, MA | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
159.        Robert Leckey, PhD | McGill University | Montreal, QC
160.        Cory Legassic, MA | Dawson College | Montreal, QC
161.        Lucie Lemonde, PhD | Université du Québec à Montréal | Montreal, QC
162.        Annalee Lepp, PhD| Chair, Department of Women’s Studies, University of Victoria/ Director, GAATW Canada | Victoria, BC
163.        Jacqueline Lewis, PhD | University of Windsor | Windsor, ON
164.        Katherine Lippel, LLL, LLM | Canada Research Chair on Occupaional Health and Safety Law | Montreal, QC
165.        Abby Lippman, PhD | McGill University | Montreal, QC
166.        Mona Loufty, MD, FRCPC, MPH | Women’s College Research Institute; Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, University of Toronto | Toronto, ON
167.        John Lowman, PhD | Simon Fraser University | West Vancouver, BC
168.        Tara Lyons, PhD | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
169.        Gayle MacDonald, PhD | St. Thomas University | Fredericton, NB
170.        Josephine MacIntosh, PhD | University of Victoria | Victoria, BC
171.        Shoshana Magnet, PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
172.        Janet Maher, PhD | Toronto, ON
173.        Lisa Maher, PhD | Kirby Institute for Infection and Immunity/ University of New South Wales | Sydney, AU
174.        Kristina Mahnicheva, MD | Tais Plus NGO | Dushanbe, Tajikistan
175.        Olga Marques, PhD | University of Ontario Institute of Technology | Oshawa, ON
176.        Stephanie Marsan, MD | Université de Montréal | Montreal, QC
177.        Brandon Marshall, PhD | Brown University | Providence, RI
178.        Jessica Martin, MA | York University | Toronto, ON
179.        Corinne Mason, PhD | Brandon University | Brandon, MB
180.        Bradley Mathers, MBChB, MD | Sydney, AU
181.        Eleanor Maticka-Tyndale, PhD | University of Windsor | Windsor, ON
182.        Jennifer Matthews, MSc | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
183.        Sergio Maulen, MD | Buenos Aires, Argentina
184.        Ruth McCarrell, RN | Providence Health Care | North Vancouver, BC
185.        Bill McCarthy, PhD | Professor, Department Chair, Department of Sociology, University of California Davis | Davis, CA
186.        William McCready, MD | Thunder Bay, ON
187.        Drew McDowell, MA, PhD (c) | University of Calgary | Calgary, AB
188.        Nicole McFadyen, PhD (c) | Toronto, ON
189.        Helen Meekosha, MA | University of New South Wales | Sydney, AU
190.        Nengeh Maria Mensah, PhD | Professeure, École de travail social, Université du Québec à Montréal | Montreal, QC
191.        Emily van der Meulen, PhD | Department of Criminology, Ryerson University | Toronto, ON
192.        Erin Michalak, PhD | Vancouver, BC
193.        Esther Miedema, PhD | Amsterdam, Netherlands
194.        Robin Milhausen, PhD | University of Guelph | Guelph, ON
195.        Cari Miller, PhD | Simon Fraser University | Vancouver, BC
196.        M-J Milloy, PhD | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
197.        Julio Montaner, MD, FRCPC | Professor, Department of Medicine, University of British Columbia; Director, BC Centre of Excellence in HIV/AIDS; Past President, International AIDS Society | Vancouver, BC
198.        Melissa Munn, PhD | Coldstream, BC
199.        Michelle Munro, MSc | Agrteam Canada | Ottawa, ON
200.        Laura Murray, MHS | Columbia University | Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
201.        Viviane Namaste, PhD | Simone de Beauvoir Institute, Concordia University | Montreal, QC
202.        Vrinda Narain, DCL | McGill University | Montreal, QC
203.        Ariel Nesbitt, MPH | Oak Tree Clinic Research | Vancouver, BC
204.        Ruth Neustifter, PhD, RMFT | University of Guelph | Guelph, ON
205.        Zoe Newman, PhD | Toronto, ON
206.        Trent Newmeyer, PhD | Brock University | Toronto, ON
207.        N. Nicole Nussbaum, LLB | London, ON
208.        Nadia O’Brien, MPH | Université de Montréal | Montreal, QC
209.        Tamara O’Doherty, MA, JD | Simon Fraser University | Langley, BC
210.        Marcia Oliver, PhD | Wilfred Laurier University | Toronto, ON
211.        Maggie O’Neill, PhD | Professor, Durham University | Durham, UK
212.        Treena Orchard, PhD | University of Western Ontario | London, ON
213.        Michelle Owen, PhD
214.        Katrina Pacey, LLB, MA | Pivot Legal Society | Vancouver, BC
215.        Charles-Maxime Panaccio, SJD | Faculty of Law, University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
216.        Colette Parent, PhD | Université d’Ottawa | Gatineau, QC
217.        San Patten, MSc | Mount Allison University | Halifax, NS
218.        Kathryn Payne, MA | George Brown College | Toronto, ON
219.        Monika Penner, M.Ed | Edmonton, AB
220.        Isabelle Perreault, PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
221.        Heather Peters, PhD | Quesnel, BC
222.        Justin Piché PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
223.        Phillip Pilon, MA | York University | Toronto, ON
224.        Catherine Pirkle, PhD | Université Laval | Québec, QC
225.        Nancy Pollak, MALS | Langara College | Vancouver, BC
226.        Susan Price, RSW
227.        Rebecca Raby, PhD | Brock University | St. Catharines, ON
228.        Momin Rahman, PhD | Department of Sociology, Trent University | Peterborough, ON
229.        Genevieve Rail, PhD | Simone de Beauvoir Institute, Concordia University | Montreal, QC
230.        Rajive Rajan, MD
231.        Frances Ravensbergen, PhD | QC
232.        Cheryl Reed-Elder, PhD
233.        Alexandra Regier, MA | Vancouver, BC
234.        William Reimer, PhD | Concordia University | Laval, QC
235.        Dan Reist, MTh | University of Victoria | Mission, BC
236.        Jamie Reschny, PhD (c) | University of Northern British Columbia | Prince George, BC
237.        Lindsey Richardson, D.Phil | BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
238.        Megan Rivers-Moore, PhD | Carleton University | Ottawa, ON
239.        Dominique Robert, PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
240.        Pascale Robitaille, MA | Monteal, QC
241.        Annika W. Rodriguez, M.Phil | International Community Health| Oslo, Norway
242.        Becki Ross, PhD | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
243.        Eric Roth, PhD | University of Victoria | Victoria, BC
244.        Sean Rourke, PhD | University of Toronto | Toronto, ON
245.        Perrine Roux, PhD | INSERM | Marseille, France
246.        Melanie Rusch, PhD | Island Health | Victoria, BC
247.        Trish Salah, PhD | Assistant Professor, Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, University of Winnipeg | Winnipeg, MB
248.        Anne Salomon, PhD | Simon Fraser University | Vancouver, BC
249.        Joan Sangster, PhD | Trent University | Peterborough, ON
250.        Ginetta Salvalaggio, MD, MSc
251.        Alejandra Sarda-Chandiramani, MD | Mama Cash | Buenos Aires, Argentina
252.        Cristine Sardina, MSJ | Desiree Alliance | Tucson, AZ
253.        Michael Schwandt, MD, MPH | University of Saskatchewan | Saskatoon, SK
254.        Jamie Scott, MD, PhD | Simon Fraser University | Port Moody, BC
255.        Javier Segura del Pozo, MD | Madrid City Council | Madrid, Spain
256.        Kate Shannon, PhD, MPH | Associate Professor of Medicine, University of British Columbia; Director, Gender and Sexual Health Initiative, BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS | Vancouver, BC
257.        Frances Shaver, PhD | Professor, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Concordia University | Montreal, QC
258.        Alexis Shotwell, PhD | Carleton University | Ottawa, ON
259.        Jean Shoveller, PhD | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
260.        Eric Shragge, PhD | Concordia University (retired) | Montreal, QC
261.        Jacob Siegel, MPH | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
262.        Reed Siemieniuk, MD | Medical Reform Group | Toronto, ON
263.        Joel Simpson, PMP, LLM | Society Against Sexual Orientation Discrimination (SASOD) | Georgetown, Guyana
264.        Paul Simpson, PhD | Kirby Institute for Infection and Immunity/ University of New South Wales | Sydney, AU
265.        Bruno Spire, MD, PhD | INSERM & AIDES | Marseille, France
266.        Malcolm Steinberg, MD | Simon Fraser University | Vancouver, BC
267.        Kyle Stevens, MD | Kelly Ave Medical Cllinic | Summerland, BC
268.        Steffanie Strathdee, PhD | Carlsbad, CA
269.        Marie-Eve Sylvestre, PhD | Faculté de droit, Université d’Ottawa| Ottawa, ON
270.        Alison Symington, LLM | Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network | Toronto, ON
271.        Jason T., MSc | Toronto, ON
272.        Marliss Taylor, RN | Streetworks | Tofield, AB
273.        Sophie Thériault, PhD | Faculté de droit – Université d’Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
274.        Athena Thiessen, MFA | Winnipeg, MB
275.        Gerald Thomas, PhD | Centre for Addictions Research of British Columbia | Summerland, BC
276.        Heidi Thomas, RN, BScN | H’ulh-etun Health Society | Duncan, BC
277.        Sarah Thompson, PhD | Department of Criminology, Ryerson University | Toronto, ON
278.        Kimberly Thomson, MA | University of British Columbia | Vancouver, BC
279.        Ryan Thoreson, D.Phil | Yale Law School | New Haven, CT
280.        Jim Thorsteinson, MD | North Vancouver, BC
281.        Meaghan Thumath, RN, MPH | University of British Columbia School of Nursing | Vancouver, BC
282.        Louise Toupin, PhD | Université du Québec à Montréal | Montreal, QC
283.        Steven Tufts, PhD | Toronto, ON
284.        Laura Track, LLB | Vancouver, BC
285.        Francine Tremblay, PhD | Concordia University | Deux-Montagnes, QC
286.        Kathryn Trevenen, PhD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
287.        Mark Tyndall, MD | University of Ottawa | Ottawa, ON
288.        Mariana Valverde, PhD | University of Toronto | Toronto, ON
289.        Kim Varma, PhD | Ryerson University | Toronto, ON
290.        Tamara Vukov, PhD | Université de Montréal | Montreal, QC
291.        Stephanie Wahab, PhD | Best Practices Policy Project | Portland, OR
292.        Pamela Walker, PhD | Carleton University | Ottawa, ON
293.        Kai Wang, MD | Toronto, ON
294.        Grant Wardell-Johnson, BEc, LLB, CTA | Sydney, AU
295.        Thomas Waugh, PhD | Program in Sexuality, Concordia University | Montreal, QC
296.        Kevin Wilson, BA (Hons.), MSc. (c) | Dalhousie University | Halifax, NS
297.        Yasmin Winsor, MScN | BC Centre for Disease Control | Vancouver, BC
298.        Teresa Whitaker, PhD | Sex Workers’ Alliance Ireland | Dublin, Ireland
299.        Melissa Autumn White, PhD | UBC Okanagan | Kelowna, BC
300.        Stephen Whittle, LLB, MA, PhD | Manchester Metropolitan University | Stockport, England
301.        Robert Winston, MD, FRCPC, FACP | BC Cancer Agency | Surrey, BC
302.        Peter Woods | Emeritus Mayor | Patron Local Government New South Wales | Sydney, AU
303.        Kristopher Woofter, PhD (c) | Concordia University/ Dawson College | Montreal, QC
304.        Sean Yaphe, MPH | McGill University | Montreal, QC
305.        Alan Young, LLM | Associate Professor, Osgoode Hall Law School | Toronto, ON
306.        Kate Zinszer, MSc | Montreal, QC

I Spoke at The Law Union of Ontario – Part 4 of 4

This is the fourth of four instalments.

Professor Young remained active for me, and when I reopened in downtown Toronto just after my conviction he asked the police if they had any objection to what I was doing, which was identical to Thornhill – which resulted in a massive raid and trial. I was open 4 years. No raid, no trial.

Another lawyer, Pierre Cloutier, advised me on and assisted me in the handling of the administrative matters of my business, like registration and minute books and so forth.

Just after I closed Professor Young told me he was considering challenging the constitutionality of some of the prostitution laws in court and wanted me to be one of the plaintiffs. Want to know what is involved in a Charter challenge? Try it some time. Half a million dollars for starters. Add to that tons of volunteer legal time. The work involved with the experts. Try 3 years of hearings and related preparation. Try dealing with government lawyers who do not hesitate to offer crap as evidence and argument. If you don’t believe it was crap ask Judge Himel and the Supreme Court. Try to deal with a government that orders their lawyers to make it go away by any means necessary and then orders them to appeal, when there are no grounds to appeal, simply to make the issue go away. A government that has no regard for Charter challenges.

Then try dealing with a portion of the media who in one breath points to the downsides of the sex trade, whatever that is, while turning a blind eye to the finding of the courts that the very laws they are fighting to retain are largely the cause of those evils. Try dealing with commentators who bring in obscure new studies or reports, not tested in court, to attack legalization of the sex trade, while ignoring the findings of a virtual 3 year public inquiry, with evidence tested in court, that resulted in the Himel decision and what it had to say about other countries. Barbara Kay and Margaret Wente are two recent examples of such cherry pickers who don’t even say in their columns if they have even read the decision. Rosie DiManno said “read the damn decision”, out of frustration with such lousy journalism.

It was never our intent to work our way to the Supreme Court. If Mr. Harper and his justice ministers were doing their jobs, they would have said that even if Judge Himel was partly right the laws needed changing, and not defending. They had the choice of acting all along. But they put themselves first.

In 2011 I published my memoirs, where I tell all about my legal battles. I got help from, you guessed it, a lawyer. Sender Herschorn and his staff were wonderful in ensuring I was within the law in writing the book, in what I said in the book and in advising me on drafts. He wrote to those mentioned in the drafts and sent them copies and made sure that no one had grounds to sue me. He also helped me with the writing and was encouraging throughout. He assisted me in private legal matters as well.

So you see, there is a great deal that lawyers can do for their clients in the sex trade, or those considering entering it, other that just react to charges or arrests. Lawyers can act proactively. Chanelle and Karen are going to talk about that, and believe me, they know their stuff and I am so grateful to share this time with them tonight because what they have to tell you is very important. 

I want to conclude by sharing just one last thing about lawyers with you. It’s the same lousy joke I tell whenever I speak to audiences of legal professionals or law students. The one good thing about the joke is that it’s so bad it ensures I have to shut up and sit down immediately. Here’s the joke.

Question: What’s the difference between a dominatrix and a woman lawyer?

Answer: The dom returns phone calls.

Thank you all very much.

I Spoke at The Law Union of Ontario – Part 3 of 4

This is the third of four instalments from my prepared text.

I also want to talk tonight about lawyers and my long journey at their side. First I want to bring to your attention that I believe that Val Scott, Amy Lebovitch and I probably got too much credit for striking down the prostitution laws. Our legal teams got too little credit. Let me drop a few names: Professor Young, Marlys Edwardh (who fought for Dr. Morgantaler), Ron Marzel, Stacey Nichols, Sabrina Pingitore, Kendra Reinhardt, Katrina Pacey, Daniel Sheppard and other lawyers fought for our side directly and indirectly.

I have been fighting, and my lawyers have been fighting on my behalf, against the laws that were struck down for 20 years. In my youth I was too poor and lacked the support to contemplate challenging the laws. But in 1994, when I was raided in Thornhill that changed. I had support. You can read all about that in my book, but with that support I took a position. I was selling role play and refused to sell sex. Yet I was raided and charged as a prostitute. David O’Connor represented me at my bail hearing and did a good job. The late Ken Danson began my defence preparations and Morris Manning took over from him. Morris also represented Dr. Morgantaler. My supporters recommended that change and Ken was supportive. Ken told me, even after he was replaced, “Terri, you can’t plead guilty. Promise me you won’t”. Morris lived up to his reputation and at my trial he had the charges thrown out because they were too vague. Unfortunately that did not hold up on appeal. Murray Klippenstein took over. He worked with Charlie Campbell and was advised by Paula Rochman and assisted by Wendy Snelgrove. That was in part because I and my supporters felt that lawyers with a reputation as activists were going to be important as the matter became a high profile battle of attrition. During this time George Callahan, a true gentleman and pit bull as the situation required, assisted me in ensuring my private affairs were in order. He also joined Klippenstein’s team, which was then disqualified. They were ruled in conflict because they represented all the accused together. Fortunately, Osgoode Professor Alan Young signed on as an advisor to the team and was ready to take over if the Klippenstein team was disqualified and he did. He was assisted by lawyer Leah Daniels, who taught at Seneca, when my trial finally got under way in 1998. They spent all summer on the case and had a team of students assisting them. 

It was a barn burner of a trial. The CNN truck and all the major networks staked out the courthouse in Newmarket, wherever that is. The trial went on for weeks and the questions to be decided, as some reporters said, were as fundamental as those raised in the recent Supreme Court decision – in my view more fundamental. Judge Roy Bogusky, with all the mass media assembled, gave a short oral decision. He said the people there had to make a living and were in a hurry to leave. What a fool. Even he was lucky to get a seat at the trial. He refused to say which of the things I did were not legal and what he did specify was for such poor reasons that no appeal that was not rigged would uphold such a disgusting miscarriage of justice. He said the misuse of the search warrant was an understandable reaction of young bucks. Rosie DiManno finished off his reputation for good in her column.

Professor Young and Paul Burstein (who needs no introduction) did the appeal in 1999. Well, Judge Finlayson of the Ontario Court of Appeal wrote the worst decision in its history. Read it some time. It was so poor, lawyers told me, that it meant that a stripper or waitress could be charged as a prostitute and it was almost impossible to have a search warrant that could be challenged. It was so poor that judges afterwards threw out prostitution and bawdy house charges simply because my conviction and appeal decision were such garbage that they became precedents to cite when acquitting. Ever wondered why prostitution convictions fell steadily since, despite the rising population and the growth of the sex trade, whatever that is. Answer in part, Finlayson.

Some of this was pointed out by now Judge David Corbett, who sought leave to appeal to the Supreme Court. He worked with Lucy McSweeney and Timothy Banks, then an articling student, when David prepared his masterful factum in 2000. Unfortunately it was not heard.

I Spoke at The Law Union of Ontario – Part 2 of 4

This is the second instalment from my prepared text.

Mr. Harper has replaced Mr. Nicholson with Mr. Mackay, the former defence minister. Women and minorities being harassed in the armed forces is more of a problem than enemy fire. Let that be Mr. Mackay’s legacy. Now it appears he is going to add to it by bringing in new laws that will not stand and will not be enforced or be obeyed, perhaps something like the so-called Nordic approach. If they bring that in it will blow up in their face. My fellow speakers will be telling you all about that shortly. But I want to make a couple of observations of my own.

For one, that approach targets men and Mr. Harper gets more support from men than women. The governments in that brought in that legislation are more left wing and more female supported than Mr. Harper’s government. It also means we women can accuse a guy who took us to dinner of trying to buy sex from us. The potential for blackmail of men is endless because women cannot be charged for selling sex. I’m sure Mr. Harper’s power base of white collar men will be thrilled to have that hanging over them.

And remember something else, something very important. The other countries who outlawed the purchase of sex acts, whatever they are, did not have a Himel decision which the Supreme Court has made a guideline for new legislation. Those very laws from other countries might be illegal in Canada. Discriminatory, too broad, overreaching, work against their stated objectives, blah, blah, blah and on and on against the Nordic approach; I think we get it.

Judge Himel said that laws other than the ones she struck down address the worst aspects of prostitution, aspects which, in large measure, resulted from the laws she struck down. So no new laws need to be introduced. The higher courts agreed. They seemed to say there was nothing less patriotic than to take the position the government has taken and is considering.

And of course law enforcement officials point out that serious criminals would go undetected and unpunished if resources had to be devoted to ensuring women only had sex for free. 

And there’s more. Perhaps most important of all. New legislation must tell us what we cannot do in private as consenting adults for money or not. The Supreme Court said new laws, if vague, would not be viable, whatever the approach. When a new law comes in it will have terms of reference. It will say “for purposes of this act, a sex act is defined as” and blah blah. If the blah blah is not clear, the law is not itself legal. Thank you Beverly MacLaughlin. Home run girl!

Now tell me, what part of all this does Mr. Harper not get? Why didn’t Mr. Nicholson and Mr. Mackay, who are lawyers, resign rather than advocate laws that everybody knows are unworkable and are a disgrace to a free society?

I cannot comment responsibly about Mr. Harper’s economic, foreign or environmental policies and so forth. But what I can say is that, in my opinion, on matters of criminal justice he has fallen beneath the dignity of many of the criminals he says he is getting tough on.

Not only that. Some of you may have heard that Mr. Harper keeps calling me and offering to appoint me to the Senate, as a government whip. Well, I am a convicted prostitute, and he keeps trying to buy me, so he would be a John. I will have to report him. No – means – no, Stevie! Bad boy! Well, enough about him.