B.C. sex workers will fill in keywords, license plates, and other quick descriptors in the database, which will be accessible by phone, to suss out potential clients. (Pixabay)

B.C. sex workers will fill in keywords, license plates, and other quick descriptors in the database, which will be accessible by phone, to suss out potential clients. (Pixabay)

New ‘bad date’ reporting tool is good news for B.C. sex workers

Peer-to-peer database will allow sex workers to report dangerous clients to one another

B.C. sex workers will soon be able to look up potential clients and see if they’ve been violent with others, thanks to funding recently secured for a provincial “bad date” registry aiming to tackle growing safety issues within the sector.

It will be the first database of its kind in Canada to use Bad Date and Aggressor Reporting (BDAR).

WISH Drop-In Centre Society, a proponent for the reporting tool, describes a bad date as “someone being rude, stealing, refusing to pay, threatening, or any acts of violence.”

Sex workers in B.C. experience substantially higher rates of violence than the general population, WISH spokesperson Estefania Duran said in a statement Tuesday.

“Due to stigma, criminalization, and other legal barriers, the vast majority of the violence toward sex workers is not reported to authorities – forcing sex workers to take safety into their own hands,” Duran continued.

READ MORE: Sex workers face new risks during COVID-19 pandemic

In reporting their dangerous encounters to the database, sex workers will protect themselves and their peers from run-ins with dangerous clients. Those who use the system will enter keywords, license plates, and other quick descriptors in the registry to suss out potential clients.

“As a trans woman sex worker, I can speak personally to the isolation and precarious working conditions many sex workers face,” said Lyra McKee, co-executive director at PACE Society.

The project plans to launch with three years of funding from the Law Foundation of British Columbia and an anonymous B.C. family foundation.

After that, those behind the project including Peers Victoria, SWAN Vancouver, Living Community and the University of Victoria hope the province will pick up the tab.

RELATED: Murder of sex worker exposes Canada’s hypocrisy on prostitution, says advocatea



sarah.grochowski@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Interior Health reports 16 new COVID-19 cases

423 cases remain active in the region

The incident happened in downtown Castlegar. Photo: Betsy Kline
Castlegar teen recounts stabbing after stranger breaks into grandmother’s house

The unnamed teen survived a terrifying attack Feb. 21

School District 8 is considering moving some programs out of Central School to make more room. Photo: Tyler Harper
SD8 considers moving Wildflower classes, REACH program out of Central School

The district says the building is set to operate over capacity in the fall

A emergency response team assisted the RCMP in apprehending a woman in Kaslo who was barricaded in her house on March 1. File photo
RCMP apprehend woman barricaded in Kaslo house

The woman had been writing threatening messages about taking hostages, police say

A byelection will be held on March 27 to fill the council seat vacated by Brittny Anderson, who is now the MLA for Nelson-Creston. File photo
Meet the Nelson byelection candidates at online forum

Event sponsored by Nelson at its Best will take place online March 11

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Older rental apartments are prime candidates for renovations, and could result in lost affordable housing stock. (Zoë Ducklow photo)
B.C.’s renoviction overhaul a good start, but won’t preserve affordable stock, lawyer says

And still no protection for people who can’t pay rent due to COVID-19

(Photo by Marissa Baecker/Shoot the Breeze)
B.C. WHL teams to hit the ice with Kelowna, Kamloops hub cities

Kelowna, Kamloops centres chosen to host B.C. WHL teams for 24-game regular season

The machines are akin to ATMs and allow drug users at risk of overdose to get hydromorphone pills dispensed to them after their palm has been scanned to identify its unique vein pattern. (CANADIAN PRESS)
Feds dole out $3.5M for ‘vending machines’ to dispense safer opioids in B.C.

The machines are located in four cities across Canada, including Vancouver and Victoria

Kelowna’s lakefront visitor centre is one of 130 around the province. Tourism businesses have been hardest hit by COVID-19 restrictions on travel. (Destination B.C.)
Tourism, small business getting COVID-19 help, B.C. minister says

$300M grant program has delivered $50 million so far

(Black Press file photo)
Agassiz boy, 11, dies from ‘extensive injuries’: Homicide team

Agassiz RCMP were called out Friday to assist with a child in medical distress

Dr. Amit Desai of St. Francis Hospital receives a COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 17. (Photo courtesy of CHI Franciscan)
B.C. has now vaccinated more people from COVID-19 than total confirmed cases

B.C. has reached a milestone, vaccinating roughly 1.6% of its population from the coronavirus

Most Read