Stepping Stone, a sex-workers advocacy group in Nova Scotia, has released a series of ads that remind people that sex workers are also someone's mother, daughter or friend.
The ads feature messages such as "I'm proud of my tramp raising two kids on her own" and "I'm glad my prostitute made me finish school." See the ads below.
The National Post interviews Rene Ross, Stepping Stone's Executive Director who points out that media coverage around sex workers often dehumanizes them.
"We want to send the message that this is a campaign about people and that behind the media headlines of 'Prostitute's body found,' so many quote-unquote 'dead hookers' because there's a lot of media that still use that, that these are in fact people with families and with lives and that they also deserve the same human rights and access to justice as the rest of the Canadian population," Ross told the National Post.
The poster campaign comes as Halifax courts deal with the murder trial for Nadine Taylor, a 29-year-old woman who was killed last year. She was working as a prostitute at the time. Ontario's Supreme Court is also currently debating whether Canada's prostitution laws, which make it illegal to communicate in public or run a brothel, are constitutional. Lawyers for sex workers argue that the law makes it impossible to practice the trade safely without breaking the law.