Jeremy Corbyn: ‘Decriminalise prostitution’

Jeremy Corbyn has faced strong criticism after it emerged that he is in favour of decriminalising prostitution.

It was reported at the weekend that the Labour leader made his position public while talking to students at Goldsmiths University, in the lead up to last year’s General Election.

The Christian Institute opposes any relaxation of the current law, arguing that it would cause more harm to women and society at large.

Exploitation and abuse

Asked for his opinion on whether prostitution should be decriminalised, Mr Corbyn said: “I am in favour of decriminalising the sex industry. I don’t want people to be criminalised.”

A Shadow Cabinet source told The Daily Telegraph that his position is personal and does not reflect party policy.

Following the comments, former Deputy Labour Leader Harriet Harman challenged Mr Corbyn on Twitter. She described prostitution as “exploitation and abuse” and said it is not “work” or “an industry”.


Labour MP Jess Phillips also criticised the party leader’s position, stating that prostitution is “a known violence against women”.

Sex should only take place between a man and a woman where there is a lifelong commitment of marriage

Colin Hart

The Christian Institute argues that relaxing laws on prostitution would lead to greater exploitation of women and an increased demand for human trafficking.

Institute Director Colin Hart outlined the Christian position. He said, “sex should only take place between a man and a woman where there is a lifelong commitment of marriage”.


“Marriage provides the most stable and secure environment for sexual intimacy.

“When a society departs from this and turns sex into something which can be bought and sold, it brings untold harm on the individual and on wider society.”

In England and Wales, the act of prostitution is not in itself against the law, but certain activities such as soliciting in a public place and kerb crawling are illegal.