Sex Work Decriminalization

BDS supports the decriminalization of sex work by removing all criminal penalties for the sale, purchase, or promotion of sex between consenting adults. Furthermore, law enforcement’s distinction between people who engage in sex work and people who organize and profit from it—or “promote” it—is a false binary, as the same people are arrested for either charge. The criminalization of sex work between consenting adults has pushed people in the sex trade to the margins, engendering exploitation and vulnerability to trafficking. People targeted for arrest for sex work are overwhelmingly transgender and cisgender women, and people arrested both for sex work and for purchase-side charges are almost exclusively Black, Brown, and Asian New Yorkers. Sex work should be entirely decriminalized, and all people who carry the burdens of sex work related records should have their convictions vacated.



ProPublica Article: As New York City Moves to Address Racialized Policing of Sex Work, Advocates and Lawyers Say It’s Not Enough


ProPublica Article: NYPD Cops Cash In on Sex Trade Arrests With Little Evidence, While Black and Brown New Yorkers Pay the Price


BDS Letter on Abolition of NYPD Vice Squad