Monday, December 1, 2014
$20M Earmarked to Fight Prostitution
Calls for proposals from frontline agencies
Released by the Federal Government/Voice file photo
The Pacific Community Resources "Healthy Options" mobile bus offers a health contact point for drug addicts, prostitutes and street people.
oday, Justice Minister and Attorney General of Canada, Peter MacKay announced that the Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act will come into force on December 6. The new criminal law provisions, together with new funding of $20 million to support programming for those who want to leave prostitution, provides a comprehensive approach to assisting victims of sexual exploitation and protecting Canadians from the harms of prostitution
"Prostitution is an inherently exploitative practice fuelled by the demand created by those who purchase sexual services. This new law aims to reduce the demand for prostitution, while the funding will assist those who sell their sexual services exit a destructive life. This law will contribute to safeguarding our communities from the harms associated with prostitution," said Peter MacKay, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, in a release on Monday.
Through the Department of Justice Canada's Victims Fund, $10.47 million will be made available to support programming to help sellers of sexual services get out of prostitution. Front-line organizations will be considered for funding under a call for proposals, which is being launched today. Eligible projects will provide victims with services such as trauma therapy, addiction recovery, employment training and financial literacy. Projects that offer transitional housing, emergency safe houses and drop-in centres will also be considered.
"Today's announcement clearly demonstrates that we are using all the tools at our disposal to assist victims and make our streets and communities safer. That is why, very shortly, we will issue a call for letters of intent through our Crime Prevention Action Fund for community-based projects that assist individuals who wish to exit prostitution," said Steven Blaney, Canada's Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness.
Under a second call for proposals, also available today through the Victims Fund, law enforcement agencies are eligible to propose projects that will support outreach activities to connect those involved in prostitution with both emergency and long-term services, such as those mentioned above. In addition, Public Safety Canada will issue a call for letters of intent in the coming days for projects that will assist those who want to exit prostitution. Through the National Crime Prevention Strategy, Public Safety Canada is committing $9.55 million to support community-based organizations in helping individuals who wish to exit prostitution.
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