Human trafficking newsletter, 6th issue (May 2017)
On 13 April 2016, France adopted a new law aiming at reinforcing the fight against prostitution and reinserting prostitutes into the society. This new legislation is an important step towards combatting trafficking in persons for purposes of sexual exploitation. This model, qualified as “abolitionist”, is the topic of this new issue.
In France, there are 30 to 40 000 prostitutes, 80% of whom are foreigners. Most of them are victims of trafficking networks and pimps.
The new legislation adopted by France in April 2016 aims at better protecting the prostitutes by discouraging the demand. By abrogating the act of solicitation and penalizing the purchase of sexual services, the new law aims at increasing awareness on the fact that prostitution is, in an overwhelming majority of cases, the result of a violence exercised against vulnerable people. In that respect, the newly adopted legislation contributes to curbing trafficking in human beings.
France is the fourth European country to adopt this abolitionist model, after Sweden, Norway and Iceland. Ireland joined them on February 14, 2017.
This is why the Permanent mission of France to the UN is intending to promote this model and its actions on the fight against trafficking in human beings in all Vienna-based international organizations, including the UNODC, to fight effectively against that form of crime.