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Before District voters legalized marijuana at the voting booth last year, Councilmember David Grosso tried to make weed legal with legislation. Now he wants to take away the criminal penalties for prostitution. In a press release, Grosso backs Amnesty International’s decision to support the decriminalization of sex work.
“For decades we have repeated the same practice over and over, trying to arrest our way to an end of sex work, but it has never worked,” Grosso says in the press release.
Grosso says decriminalization would have to address problems like violence towards prostitutes and the condoms that are left on the sidewalk after their liaisons. Grosso spokeswoman Darby Hickey tells LL that Grosso is considering legislation about decriminalization, but hasn’t written any yet.
Not everyone in the District government is as laissez-faire about prostitution as Grosso. Ward 2 Councilmember Jack Evans wants to tow the cars of would-be johns caught in the act, while the Metropolitan Police Department has arrested 157 people in prostitution stings since July.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery