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Legislative Memo: Immunity from Prosecution for Prostitution Offenses for Sex Workers, Survivors, & Witnesses Who Report Crimes

When sex workers and survivors of trafficking experience or witness violence, the threat of arrest and prosecution can make people fearful of reporting to police. It can also be a deterrent to seeking medical treatment, due to fear of healthcare providers reporting to law enforcement. This not only perpetuates disparate treatment and access within the criminal legal system, it is also poor public health policy.

To reduce this inequity, the NYCLU urges the legislature to pass A.255-A / S.2233-A, which would prohibit law enforcement from charging victims and witnesses with prostitution offenses or with sharing living quarters with sex workers when victims and witnesses report crimes or assist in investigations.

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