Annual Reports

Looking back and celebrating our achievements in providing support to sex workers in Edinburgh. Our thanks to all who contributed.

Annual Report 2010-11

This time last year, I remarked that it had been a strange year for Scot-PEP. (As if, of course, things are ever “normal” for us!) However, just before that meeting, and for some time after, some sort of normality was restored to Scot-PEP life. I am referring, of course, to the resurrection of Trish Godman’s proposals to criminalise the purchase of sex.

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Annual Report 2009-10

It has been a strange year for Scot-PEP. This time last year, we were anticipating life in our new offices in the Cowgate. That all changed in February when, thanks to Ruth and her new post with the Global Network of Sex Work Projects, we were able to return to more familiar surroundings in Newhaven.

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Annual Report 2008-09

This has been a truly traumatic year for the organisation. Almost immediately after our last AGM in November 2008, we were informed by NHS Lothian that they were going to reduce our funding by two thirds with effect from 1st April 2009, and the timescale left us no time to make any alternative arrangements for core funding.

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Annual Report 2007-08

We have managed to get to the end of yet another year at Scot-PEP, and sometimes we wonder how we managed it. In a climate of static if not reducing funding for causes such as ours, the Board has made every effort to control costs and raise funds where we can. We are very grateful for the continued support, both fiscal and moral, from our funders, NHS Lothian.

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Annual Report 2006-07

In February 2007 the Scottish Parliament decided to ignore both the voices of sex workers and the Scottish Executive Expert Group on Prostitution, which had spent 18 months gathering information and evidence. A few brave MSPs chose to argue the case for sex workers' safety to be given priority - we thank Margo MacDonald, Iain Smith, Susan Deacon, Mark Ballard and the Green Party for their compassion and understanding. 

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Annual Report 2005-06

In 2005 the Scottish Executive defined street prostitution as ‘violence against women’, but regretfully has not come up with any real strategy to tackle the disproportionate levels of violence, harassment and abuse actually experienced by street based sex workers. While many of their aims are laudable they have failed to grasp the long term reality of street prostitution within our society and the daily experiences of street based sex workers across Scotland. They have ignored the need to campaign against violence against sex  workers, focusing rather on campaigning against men purchasing sexual services. Surely they could offer sex workers, as citizens, equal protection within society.

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Annual Report 2004-05

SCOT-PEP's service provision to indoor and street based sex workers has remained at its lowest level ever, despite the increased vulnerability of street based sex workers and their experience of violence, abuse and exploitation.

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Annual Report 2003-04

SCOT-PEP service provision to both indoor and street  based sex workers had to be further reduced when funding came to an end in February 2004 for dedicated work with young people involved in prostitution.

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Annual Report 2002-03

The world has remained a cruel and unforgiving place for sex workers. SCOT-PEP service provision to both indoor and street based sex workers had to be reduced with the loss of the New Futures Project funding in March 2002.

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Annual Report 2001-02

The world has remained a cruel and unforgiving place, at times, and the situation of sex workers continues to leave them vulnerable to violence, abuse and exploitation. The new millennium brought dramatic changes to the lives and increased the vulnerability of women working on the streets of Leith. In April 2001 complaints from residents around Coburg Street resulted in the area designated for soliciting being significantly reduced, causing conflict and disruption amongst the women working in the area. However, this did not resolve the concerns raised and on 15 August 2001 Lothian & Borders Police established a new non- residential area of tolerance for soliciting on Salamander Street. After two weeks of intense lobbying from local residents and businesses the experiment was deemed to have failed and on 1 December 2001, World AIDS Day, the street prostitution policy adopted for almost two decades in Edinburgh was abandoned. 

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