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Index du Journal des débats - Participants

42-1 (27 novembre 2018 - )

Commission spéciale sur l'exploitation sexuelle des
Fascicule n°1, 4 novembre 2019, page 40


those programs that run, I think, about eight times a year, in the three years that I've been in this unit, of all the people and hundreds and hundreds of men that have been arrested in these operations, there's only been two situations where we've rearrested the same person. Now, that's not saying that people are not repeating the offenses, they're maybe getting better educated or they may be doing things a little bit differently, and we're not catching them again, but, so far as the numbers that we resee and we rearrest, we like to think that program a way, an alternative to educating some of these people who just don't understand or may not understand the trauma or how they're contributing to the problem. We'll learn from that and correct their behavior.

M. Hughan (Colin) : That's great. I have a couple points to add. First off, thank you very much for this opportunity. And we just want to give some perspective from Edmonton and from Alberta. I know that the focus here is on child sex exploitation. Just to add to what Dan talked about from the girls we're seeing from Québec, I just want to stress the collaboration between cities and provinces. And, this forum, I know it's not specifically to collaborate on law enforcement issues, but it still is a step in that direction. And I just want to reach out and just say thanks for that, because we are seeing a lot of your girls coming out West here because of that money piece. So, thank you for that.

I also want to talk about a fairly unique legislation that we have out here, in Alberta, we call it the PSECA, which is an acronym for protection of sexual exploitation of children's act. And that PSECA, basically, if any youth under 18 is involved in the sex trade, they can be apprehended and enter into a program where they get educated around the risks of the sex trade lifestyle. That's a unique legislation that we have in Alberta.

I'd also like to talk about just... We have a fairly new provincial government, that just took power a few months ago, they have a provincial action plan to combat human trafficking, they are calling it a nine-point plan. There are some different factors coming out of that as far as that might change the landscape for human trafficking and child sex trafficking out here, in the province. Exactly the details of that, we don't know beyond what's on the website, but I just wanted to mention that based on this forum.

I also want to talk about an initiative that the Edmonton Police Service is working on, Dan is spearheading the initiatives. We're actually going to be developing some ads and some awareness campaigns around the demand side of it. So, we've done awareness campaigns where we talked about human trafficking, the dangers of it. Something that is a little unique on that same theme is we are actually going to be targeting the demand, and we are coming out with some different graphics around that and what can have some good impact around that, but we are also looking at a different way of implementing that where... it's basically a Google search engine type of thing, where someone enters «escorts Edmonton» on Google, and they are going to get these hits coming back, responding about the danger and awareness of being a part of that demand problem.

So, I just wanted to talk about those types of things happening in our service and in our province. And then, Brian, anything to ad?

M. McGuigan (Brian) : I think you've covered everything, Colin. The average age that we see children being victimized into human traffic on the sex trade, you know, is between 14 and 15 years of age. I'm not sure if that correlates with your province. And the PSECA legislation gives us a period of arrest or apprehension, I should say, for five days. Within that five days, the social workers who work under the PSECA legislation make a second application to a court, where the child can be apprehended for 21 days in total, and during that time they receive any counseling for trauma, drug addiction, and they are in a secure unit that's in a secret address, so no one can... any traffickers cannot get any contact with them. And that's all.

Le Président (M. Lafrenière) : Great. Thank you for your presentation. Before going to the questions period, can you talk to us a bit about those permits that you issued to escort services, massages?

• (19 h 50) •

M. Duiker (Dan) : Yes, we can. That's something that falls within the city of Edmonton bylaw and licencing more so than us, but effectively what it says it's that, if you want to work as an escort or if you want to work in a body rub center situation, you need to be licenced by the city. The licence doesn't cost any money, but what it does is it affords the city bylaw in that licensing area and enforcement to provide a form where, if you want to be licenced to work in this industry, then you need to attend a four-hour class type setting where you'll experience lectures on the law, on your rights, on safety planning, information from previous people involved in the sex trade and some of their stories. And what it does is it provides that opening where somebody who may not know exactly what they're getting into... to have their eyes opened about what to expect if they're involved in this industry. If they do complete that class, and there's no reason to decline it, you know, gang involvement or violent history, they'll grant those licence, which they carry under a pseudonym, and we'll allow them to work in those industries.

I have personally sat in one of those four-hour classes, and two young girls sat at the front, giggling as they went through the laws, and so on, and then, when a woman who was a sex trade worker for years and was able to get out spoke about her experiences, and after hearing her experiences and what the true expectations were, those two girls left. So, I think it sets a little bit of a wall where, somebody who may be pushing or recruiting somebody to be part of their massage parlor or working for them in any sort of escort agency... it gives us a little bit of a stage to check your balances as to whether this is something you really want to be involved in.

Le Président (M. Lafrenière) : Great. Thank you very much for your presentation. From now on, there will be 25 minutes of questions from the group that we got here, starting with Christopher Skeete, from Sainte-Rose.


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