"The Harper Conservatives are entitled to their own ideology and their own opinions. They are not, however, entitled to their own facts. Deliberately, almost gleefully, withholding key evidence from the Committee should trouble Canadians who value honesty and integrity -- regardless of what side of the prostitution debate they may fall on. "
The Prostitution Poll MacKay and Harper Don't Want You to See
Many Canadians may not know this, but prostitution is legal in Canada and has been since 1892 when the Criminal Code was first enacted. It was actually activities surrounding the act of prostitution that were illegal, specifically three sections of the Criminal Code that outlawed communicating in public for the purpose of prostitution, living on the avails of prostitution and lastly, operating a brothel.
In the now famous Bedford case, a group of sex workers brought a Charter challenge arguing that those three provisions put their safety and security at risk, thereby violating their Charter rights.
In its landmark decision last December, the Supreme Court of Canada agreed with the sex workers, striking down the three Criminal Code provisions as being in violation of their Charter rights under Section 7 -- the security of the person provision. The Supreme Court suspended its ruling for one year in order to give Parliament the opportunity to enact new legislation, if they chose to do so. This past June, Justice Minister Peter MacKay introduced Bill C-36 -- a legislative response to the Supreme Court ruling.