Strip-tease dancers who planned to bare themselves in Canada will have to take their professional skills elsewhere. Foreign strippers are no longer welcome in Canada, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said Wednesday.
The decision was made in order “to protect vulnerable foreign workers from the risk of abuse and exploitation in sex trade related businesses," and control human trafficking, AFP reports.
The new law will come into force next week. Those who are already working in escort services, strip clubs, brothels and massage parlors will be denied temporary work permits, Kenney said in a statement.
“The government cannot in good conscience continue to admit temporary foreign workers to work in businesses in sectors where there are reasonable grounds to suspect a risk of sexual exploitation,” The Globe and Mail quotes Minister Kenney as saying.
The change has caused protest from the Adult Entertainment Association of Canada, who says its “unfair to link legal dance business with illegal prostitution.” They will have to replace their employees with somebody else, having relied on employees from Eastern Europe and Asia.
"They're beautiful, exotic and very professional," AFP quotes a club owner as saying. "Banning them from Canada just leaves them with fewer options to escape a life of poverty in their home country." There’s also a significant danger, that strippers and other workers in the field would rather switch to the illegal underground sex industry rather than leave Canada.
According to The Globe and Mail a spokesman from the strip clubs business says over 700 strippers work in Canada on one-year working visa permits.