When politicians legalise what is wrong, it is not just the victims who pay.
When prostitution was legalised, politicians never told us that it would one day be taxpayer-funded.
This week a judge ruled that the purchase of another human being for sex could be paid for by you and me, whether we agreed or not.
This meant the Morrison government failed in its attempt to stop National Disability Insurance Scheme money being used to pay prostitutes and pimps.
The Federal Court ruled in favour of a woman with multiple sclerosis who wanted to include “sexual services” in her publicly funded support plan.
“There is no implied exclusion of such activities either, and indeed in our opinion the better view is that they are intended to be included,” the court said.
These are the words of a court that has lost its moral compass but only because politicians lost their’s 20-30 years ago when prostitution and brothels were widely legalised by most state governments.
Instead of shrinking the illegal sex trade and making having sex for money with strangers safer, the trade has blossomed and more women than ever are being harmed.
I write about this in one of the chapters in my up-coming book, I Kid You Not, notes from 20 years in the trenches of the culture wars.
Who would have thought it would come to this? Now everyone is helping fund a trade which allows predominantly young women (notwithstanding this week’s court case) to be legally exploited.
Good on disabilities minister Stuart Robert for fighting this.
Robert said the Morrison government “respects the court’s decision … (but) does not believe that use of NDIS funds to pay for the services of a sex worker is in line with community expectations”.
He has flagged legislative changes so taxpayers don’t have to pay to buy people for the sex.
Let’s hope common sense prevails in the Parliament. That could be a problem.
My friend Wendy Francis, who campaigns for the Nordic policy model which criminalises the buyer of sex (usually men) has called on the government to act.
“Why would the government use precious disability funds on prostitution, when prostitution disables people?
“Studies show that 68% of prostitutes meet the DSM criteria for a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder. Sex workers also sustain physical disabilities from a life in that industry.”