Another legal case, this time it’s the granting of a judicial review of Lord Maurice Morrow’s private members bill criminalising payment for sex.
As our own Siobhan Fenton (writing here for the London Independent) notes:
In an unprecedented case, a sex worker has taken launched a legal challenge against the laws, saying they expose sex workers to greater danger as it means they are more likely to have to operate alone. Laura Lee, a sex worker and Dublin-born law graduate, has brought the case. She claims the legislation is a breach of human rights entitlements to privacy and freedom from discrimination
Northern Ireland is the only region of the UK where it is a criminal offence to pay for sex. Purchase of sexual services became a criminal offence under a private member’s bill brought before Stormont by MLA Lord Morrow, from the evangelical Christian party DUP. Lord Morrow argued criminalisation of buyers would reduce sexual exploitation, while penalising clients but not workers.
Northern Ireland’s Attorney General John Larkin has opposed the review and called for proceedings to be thrown out at the first stage.
You can read more of Laura Lea’s case in a soapbox by her Slugger carried a couple of years back. Interesting to see how it pans out.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty