Monthly Archives: March 2012

Israel to Ban the Purchase of Sexual Services

By RUTH EGLASH Jerusalem Post
Last updated: 02/15/2012 18:59

Bill passes first reading in Knesset plenum, to be forwarded to parliamentary c’tee for adjustments before becoming law.

Prostitute [illustrative]

By Edgard Garrido / Reuters

A bill that will make paying for sex services a criminal offense passed its preliminary reading in the Knesset plenum on Wednesday and will be forwarded to one of the parliamentary committees for further review and adjustments before becoming law.

The legislation was proposed by MK Orit Zuaretz (Kadima), chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Trafficking in Women, and is supported by many Knesset members from across the political spectrum.

It will impose a sentence of six-months in jail or community service on any person who utilizes the services of a prostitute or pays for any other related sexual services.

On Sunday, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation gave the bill its initial stamp of approval, and the proposed draft is already being well-received by nonprofit organizations working with victims of prostitution and trafficking.

Earlier on Wednesday, Zuaretz held a hearing in her committee to discuss the success of the bill thus far and to explore next steps if and when the law is finally passed.

In her opening statement to the committee, Zuaretz emphasized that she feels it is her duty as an elected official to “protect human dignity” and that her work in making this law a reality is part and parcel of that. She described the legislation as a central element in empowering social change with regard to prostitution and human trafficking.

MK Tzipi Hotovely (Likud), chairwoman of the Committee on the Status of Women, called the bill an “historic achievement.”

“When I signed on this law, I thought it was only a pipe dream and that nothing would really be done to protect these women,” she said.

“But I believe that if you are determined then you can, one day, create a new order in society.”

Hotovely added that in the process of making this law a reality, Zuaretz had succeeded in changing accepted social norms, similar to when the law dealing with sexual harassment was first approved.

Heads of various nongovernment organizations working to eliminate human trafficking and sexual slavery, academics and other government officials also hailed the preliminary approval of the law, pointing out that it has already gone a long way toward changing accepted social attitudes toward the country’s booming sex industry.

Although there are no official figures, it is estimated that there are currently more than 15,000 people working in the prostitution industry in Israel, 5,000 of whom are minors. Israel has been a destination country for more than 25,000 victims of human trafficking since the 1990s.

Research further suggests that many of Israel’s prostitutes and sex slaves are controlled by pimps and some experience violence at the hands of their clients. The clients come from every segment of society and every ethnic, religious and socioeconomic stratum.

At Wednesday’s meeting, Tzippi Nachshon-Glick, director of Services for Adults and Young Adults at Risk in the Ministry of Welfare and Social Affairs, also spoke about the existing government program to help rehabilitate women looking to leave the sex industry.

Nachshon-Glick said that the program, which was initiated by the government in 2006 and receives up to NIS 10 million a year for shelters and rehabilitation programs in Haifa and Tel Aviv, will soon be expanded to Beersheba and Eilat.


Interview about prostitution reform and the Swedish model of legislation

http://blogs.abc.net.au/files/laila-mickelwait.mp3 


We are called to be faithful

I am currently touring the entire continent of Australia with Exodus Cry and the Australian Christian Lobby showing the film Nefarious: Merchant of Souls to the state parliaments and to the public.  I have been in some very intense situations over the past three weeks but God has been miraculously moving and I am constantly reminded of the fact that HE is doing this work and I am blessed enough to be able to go along for the ride.  Over the past few weeks I have come to understand more and more that God will put us in situations and pit us against problems that are overwhelming…I am constantly faced with the huge global injustice of sex trafficking, the resistance of lawmakers, the lies and deception surrounding the issue and the pervasiveness of the sex industry in our culture. The question many people ask me is “this is so huge, what can we do?” I have thought about that question many times and I believe we can do our part. God has been speaking these words to me lately, “I did not call you to be successful, I called you to be faithful.”  Revelation 17:14 says,  “for He is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful.”  What does it mean to be faithful? The Greek word for “faithful” is pistos and it speaks of someone who has shown themselves trustworthy in the execution of duties. It can also refer to one that is trusting rather than trustworthy. God has called us to trust Him and to carry out the assignments He has given us to the best of our ability and HE will do the rest….

Isaiah 42 says that Jesus will bring forth justice…we do our small part and He does His big part.

Behold my servant, whom I uphold,
my chosen, in whom my soul delights;
I have put my Spirit upon him;
he will bring forth justice to the nations.

He will not cry aloud or lift up his voice,
or make it heard in the street;
a bruised reed he will not break,
and a faintly burning wick he will not quench;
he will faithfully bring forth justice.

He will not grow faint or be discouraged
till he has established justice in the earth;
and the coastlands wait for his law.