The Salvation Army in Winnipeg has introduced a new campaign educating people about Canada's prostitution laws. The Reality Check Initiative, which launched in November, includes a poster and a booklet explaining the legal and societal realities of the sex trade.
The poster, in 14 different languages, states that buying sex in Canada is illegal, while the booklet addresses myths and misconceptions around the
“This campaign is primarily about making people aware that the sex trade is a form of exploitation,” says Hennes Doltze, social worker, Winnipeg correctional and justice services. “It shows them that women involved in the trade are not doing it because they want to, but because they are either forced into it by another person, or they are forced into it by life circumstances, where it's a way of survival.”
While spearheading this initiative, The Salvation Army has partnered with the local police, the provincial government and other community agencies to spread the message as widely as possible in the community. There are also pdf versions of the poster and booklet available for distribution online [download poster and booklet].
The Reality Check Initiative is an update of a previous campaign, reflecting Canada's new prostitution laws, which changed in December 2014. “Previously, prostitution wasn't illegal, though some related activities were,” explains Doltze, “but that has changed, so we wanted to make people aware.”