The key aims of the act were to safeguard the human rights of sex workers, protect them from exploitation, and to promote their welfare and occupational health and safety. It was an offence to coerce another person to provide sexual services or to pay for sexual services from a person aged under 18. It also became illegal for a client to have sex with a worker without using a condom.
Sex workers and clients of sex workers must now take all reasonable steps to adopt safer sex practices. If they do not do so, they are liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding $2,000.
The Act states:
A) A person must not provide or receive commercial sexual services unless he or she has taken all reasonable steps to ensure a prophylactic sheath or other appropriate barrier is used if those services involve vaginal, anal, or oral penetration or another activity with a similar or greater risk of acquiring or transmitting sexually transmissible infections.
B) A person must not, for the purpose of providing or receiving commercial sexual services, state or imply that a medical examination of that person means that he or she is not infected, or likely to be infected, with a sexually transmissible infection.
C) A person who provides or receives commercial sexual services must take all other reasonable steps to minimise the risk of acquiring or transmitting sexually transmissible infections.
D) Every person who contravenes subsection (1), subsection (2), or subsection (3) commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $2,000.
This is a sensible step as to prevent STI transmission and spread and to safe guard everyone’s health.