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Taiwan Judicial head designate backs legalizing prostitution

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Taiwan Judicial head designate backs legalizing prostitution

Judicial head-designate backs legalizing prostitution

Judicial Yuan President-designate Hsu Tzong-li said during an interpellation session in the Legislative Yuan Thursday that he supports the legalization of prostitution to curb the illegal sex trade and prevent exploitation and abuse of sex workers from gangsters. Local women’s groups remain divided over this issue.

Hsu, a former Grand Justice, and Supreme Court Justice Tsai Chiung-tun were named early September as the nominees for president and vice president of the Judicial Yuan, respectively. The nominations have been sent to the Legislative Yuan for confirmation.

When asked by a law maker about his thoughts on prostitution during a legislative assembly Thursday, Hsu replied prostitution should be legalized because well-regulated prostitution can be relatively safe and profitable for sex workers, who mostly came from underprivileged backgrounds.

In Taiwan, proponents of legalizing prostitution believe it would reduce crime, help people out of poverty, get prostitutes off the streets, and allow consenting adults to make their own choices.

Kuo Pei-yu, secretary of the Collective of Sex Workers and Supporters (COSWAS), supports legalizing prostitution. Kuo said that prostitutes who experience violence may be reluctant to call the police since what they're doing is illegal. Sex workers in licensed brothels, on the other hand, can have someone to back them up.

The opponents believe that legalizing prostitution would lead to an increase in sexually transmitted diseases, human trafficking, and violent crimes.

Garden of Hope Foundation CEO Chi Hui-Jung indicated that the foundation has long been dedicated to rescuing young prostitutes, and they found it would be irresponsible to simply legalize prostitution without the support of a comprehensive economic and employment policy to help desperately impoverished women find better jobs. Chi cited Sweden as an example to prove that the crime rate is low in countries which criminalize prostitution.