EUSA face opposition from MSP Rhoda Grant regarding a motion to support the decriminalization of sex work
Students will have the chance to vote on whether Edinburgh University Students’ Association (EUSA) should actively support the decriminalization of sex work at the Student Council meeting on Thursday 6 February.
The motion will call for EUSA to issue a statement demanding decriminalization and to liaise with organizations such as SCOT-PEP and the Sex Worker’s Open University to work towards this goal.
The motion will also result in a zero-tolerance attitude to “whorephobia” and an investigation into how to support student sex workers at the university.
Finally, EUSA will disparage anti-sex worker campaigns employed at other universities.
The vote will take place following news that Edinburgh City Council has decided not to license sauna and massage parlours, a policy shift away from the prior acceptance towards sex work by the city.
Naomi Beecroft – the student proposing the motion – told The Journal: “Repression of sex workers right here in Edinburgh is a huge issue, and one EUSA is well-placed to fight on.”
She said that police repression is resulting in aggressive raids, denial of licenses and the police requesting that saunas be banned from stocking items of a sexual nature.
The request from Police Scotland has been withdrawn.
Beecroft raised concerns that this crackdown will result in people being put out of work, losing their homes, getting poorer pay, being unable to organise and people being put in danger.
She said: “EUSA recently declared itself a feminist organization. For me this is the most important issue for feminists in Edinburgh right now, and we have to do everything within our power to stop it.”
Read more about Edinburgh University Students’ Association and the decriminalization of sex work at The Journal, Scotland’s student newspaper