Wednesday, December 20, 2000

p. 2.

Child Hookers 'safe'

"POLICE WILL BE able to sweep up child hookers and hold them in a "safe" place for up to 30 days under a new anti-exploitation bill brought forward by the Ontario government yesterday.

The attorney general also plans to amend the Highway Traffic Act to strip johns and pimps of drivers' licences for at least a year.

Jim Flaherty said the proposed legislation, introduced yesterday, would give the estimated 1,200 prostitutes under 18 years old a chance at a new life.

"The proposed legislation would reach beyond the streets to the places where these children are hidden — locations such a adult entertainment facilities, massage parlours, bawdy houses, escort services, telephone or internet sex lines and the pornography industry," Flaherty said.

The bill gives police powers to remove a young hooker and put him or her in an established "safe" house.

Flaherty said a 16- or 17-year-old teenager would be legally free to go after the 30 days.

While in the safe house, the prostitutes would have access to medical, mental health and legal services, along with counselling.

Anyone convicted as a pimp or john will lose his licence for one year if the vehicle was involved in the crime."

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Created: December 20, 2000
Last modified: January 21, 2001
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