The Prostitution Offender Program (POP) is a program for persons arrested for Obtaining Sexual Services for Consideration (Sec 286.1 CCC). POP is a regional strategy in the Okanagan which encourages sex trade consumers to gain a greater understanding of prostitution and related issues so that they are able to make different decisions in the future. It is an opportunity for the community to have a voice in addressing the negative effects of prostitution within our community.
To educate rather than punish. The sex trade consumer is provided the opportunity to understand the effects of their actions. In a non-confrontational approach, participants will listen to the real stories from those adversely affected by the sex trade. It is a one of a kind diversion program for those arrested for their first time as solicitors of prostitution.
To change attitudes and behaviours by having clients understand why they should not see the sex trade as a reasonable option to meet their needs.
Since starting in 1995, Prostitution Offender Programs have offered in several major cities across North American including Vancouver and San Francisco. It is a program that has always sought to curb the demand by concentrating on the sex trade consumer.
The program employs an approach which includes community members as part of the solution to the problem. The program exposes the realities of the sex trade. Clients are shown how their actions support an industry which is directly responsible for the commercial sexual exploitation and abuse of youth and vulnerable populations.