Buying Sex is Not a Sport

We are in solidarity with women both inside and outside of the sex industry. This campaign was to challenge and impact the male demand for sexual access to women's bodies.

 

Buying Sex Is Not a Sport was a grassroots campaign to raise awareness and effect change around sex trafficking and the 2010 Olympic games. The demand for sexual access to the bodies of women and children fuels human trafficking. Women and children in Metro Vancouver and Whistler are routinely coerced into the flesh trade to meet this demand, and a large sporting event such as the 2010 Olympics only furthered exploitation through a rise in the demand for paid sex. 

 

Demand is an issue we have already flagged in Canada and have been working against for years.

 

The very workings of human trafficking are a market-based model of supply and demand. There is an uncontrolled male demand for sexual access to the bodies of women (and children) and the supply for this demand is met through violating the dignity of women. It is our conviction that in order to stem the tide of human trafficking we must end the demand for paid sex. Demand flourishes in an atmosphere of anonymity.

 

 

Buying Sex Is Not a Sport was organized and supported by a broad base of community members including formerly prostituted women, feminists, faith-based organizations, Aboriginal women's groups, teachers, activists, frontline workers, students, anti-capitalists, academics, and women currently exploited in the sex industry both locally and globally.

 

This campaign spread the message broadly through community-based public forums, postering campaigns, t-shirts, buttons, social media and your creative ideas. Public forums were held at University of British Columbia, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver Public Library,

 

We also coordinated several silent direct actions during the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.  All were held in public spaces and marked by peaceful action. 

 

 

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BSNS Seen at the Games!

 

Olympic fans streaming to the arena for the men's hockey face-off between the USA and Canada were greeted by silent, peaceful witnesses for the dignity of women and against the male demand for paid sex. Partipants stood along a fence wearing bright t-shirts in Olympic colours emblazoned with teh message, "Buying Sex Is Not a Sport," and holding signs saying, "Men: Don't Buy Women" and "For Prostitutes, Against Prostitution."

 

Leaflets with a brief explanation of how the demand for paid sex is based on gender inequality and fuels the exploitation of women were handed out upon request. Perhaps the most beautiful aspect of the action was the spirit of love and nonviolence that infused such a powerful critique of gender-based violence.

 

Buying Sex Is Not a Sport is organized and supported by a broad base of community members including formerly prostituted women,  feminists, faith-based organizations, Aboriginal women's groups, teachers, activists, frontline workers, students, anti-capitalists, academics, and women currently exploited in the sex industry both locally and globally.

 

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Recently tweeted by someone impressed with this campaign...

 

 

 

 

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Hussein Ev A-slam wrote and produced this song and made a video about sex trafficking. What are you doing to engage in Buying Sex Is Not a Sport?

 

 

 

 

Hussein Ev A-slam rockin his shirt on stage during his performance!!

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10 Things You Can Do Today…

 

Address the brokenness in your own life.

Oppose the legalization (or total decriminalization) of prostitution.

Support gender equality and human dignity in your daily life.

Directly ask the men in your life if they pay or sex.

Challenge those who make sexist "jokes".

Educate others about human trafficking.

Question the norm of "sex for sale".

Seek freedom from a lifestyle of consumerism.

Support groups working with trafficked persons.

Advocate for laws to decriminalize the selling of sex and criminalize the buying of sex.

 

 

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Campaign Resources


"It's Just Like Going to the Supermarket." - Report from CWASU

 

"Report of the UN Special Rapporteur on Trafficking in Persons" - Sigma Huda

 

"Faster, Higher, Stronger" - Trafficking and the 2010 Oympic Games

 

"Prostitution: Violating The Human Rights of Poor Women" - Shelagh Day

 

 

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Community Forums

The community was engaged through hearing from women who have exited prostitution, frontline workers, Aboriginal women, men who have contributed to the demand for paid sex or are willing to speak against demand as men, feminists, Christ followers and academics. After the forum participants were empowered to engage in a variety of meaningful actions to deter the demand for paid sex and stand for the dignity of marginalized women and children.