SEX WORK LAW REFORM: Bringing the New Zealand model to Scotland

Information and resources regarding Jean's New Zealand model consultation

We are delighted to be working with Jean Urquhart to bring these proposals forward. Jean has worked closely with SCOT-PEP and other sex worker-led organisations in Scotland over many months, and the result is a set of pragmatic proposals that seek to uphold and extend the safety and rights of everyone who sells sex in Scotland.


The proposals are closely modelled on New Zealand’s law. New Zealand’s model of decriminalisation is supported by the World Health Organization, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, Anti Slavery International, the Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women, UNAIDS, the Lancet, the Association for Women in Development, the Women’s Global Network for Reproductive Rights, the UK Network of Sex Work Projects, HIV Scotland, NUS Scotland, and every sex worker-led organisation in the world.


Jean’s consultation is open now: the closing date for responses is December 1st, 2015. It is available on the Scottish Parliament website, and on Jean’s own site.


We have produced some resources to help inform the public and policymakers about this issue. We have:


  1. A one-page summary of the legislative changes proposed in Jean’s consultation.

  2. A two-page briefing on the New Zealand model: what it looks like in New Zealand, what the outcomes of the law have been. (There is also a more detailed four-page version of this briefing.)

  3. A two-page briefing on the Swedish model, and how it harms people who sell sex. (Also available in a longer, more detailed version.)

  4. A two-page briefing on how the Scottish Government’s current definition of sex work as ‘commercial sexual exploitation’ harms sex workers and impedes the delivery of effective services. (A six-page version also available.)

You can read our press release from the launch of Jean’s proposals here.