313 Canadian Law – Presumption

The Law

286.2(2) For the purposes of the above, evidence that a person lives with or is habitually in the company of a person who offers or provides sexual services for consideration is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, proof that the person received a financial or other material benefit from those services.

The thinking? The government implemented this law in order to prevent the commercialization of the provision of sexual services.

However, this law has the following impacts on sex workers:

  • Because anyone who lives with or is habitually in the company of a sex worker is presumed guilty, this is infantilizes and isolates sex workers and says to them that they can’t be trusted to choose to support others with their earnings.
  • It also makes it difficult for sex workers to hire people to help them stay safe in their work.
  • Finally, it criminalizes the normal operations of sex-based businesses because they profit from the earnings of sex workers in their employ.
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