The numbers are controversial.    According to police-reported statistics, only 5% of persons accused of prostitution are adolescents and more than 80% of them are young women. Others claim higher numbers.  In contrast, many groups organized and led by sex workers across the country continue to advocate for the complete decriminalization of sex work in Canada, arguing that the illegality of purchasing sex services harms sex workers. These organizations have often been at the forefront of challenging laws criminalizing aspects of sex work. Sex worker-led organizations advocating for decriminalization include Sex Professionals of Canada (SPOC), led by Valerie Scott and Amy Lebovith; Pace, Vancouver; peers (Victoria); Maggie`s (Toronto); Stella, Montreal. [ref. In the face of repression, sex workers have organized to fight for their rights, mainly since the 80s. The HIV/AIDS epidemic opened the door to harm reduction programs that helped fund the unionization of sex workers, shifting the conversation from a purely moralized perspective.
 Many authors and organizations argue that sex is here to stay and cannot be extinguished.    Therefore, they propose to decriminalize sex work and create a legal system that supports the health and safety of sex workers.   The Protection of Children Involved in Prostitution Act (February 1999) provided that a child who wishes to leave prostitution has access to community support programs, but if not, may be arrested by the police. They could then be locked in a safe protective home for 72 hours, where they could receive emergency care, treatment, assessment and planning. Clients and pimps can be charged with child sexual abuse and fined up to $25,000, 2 years in prison, or both. Factors such as the legality or otherwise of same-sex marriage and the state of women`s rights in the respective cities were also examined. Wesley argues that Levesque, who was a sex worker, was endangered by stricter prostitution laws. The debate comes from feminists, civil rights activists, politicians, and law and order officials. The debates revolve around morality, constitutional rights and freedoms, and the fact that this is one of the few areas of consensual sexual activity still subject to legal review.  The Penal Code was amended in 1988 to include child sexual abuse and to link juvenile prostitution to the “Pimping” section. In 1995, the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Working Group on Prostitution stated that these provisions were “ineffective in bringing to justice clients and pimps of youth who engage in prostitution.” They indicated that charges under these provisions were rare and that young prostitutes and their clients continued to be charged under the general summary conviction that prohibits street prostitution, as in the case of adults. Law enforcement problems are due to the reluctance of young people to testify against pimps and the difficulty of arresting clients.
“Prostitution” is not defined in Canadian law, but is based on case law, which considers three elements necessary to determine prostitution: (i) the provision of sexual services, (ii) the indiscriminate nature of the act (soliciting rather than selecting clients), and (iii) the need for some form of payment.  In 2014, Canada adopted a partial version of the Women`s Equality Model in Prostitution Law (or Nordic Model). This model was first implemented in Sweden and is also used in other countries. It has three main components: 1) The criminalization of pimping and the purchase of sexual services and the decriminalization of the sale of sexual services. 2) It provides strong preventive social services that also help women leave prostitution. (3) It educates the public about prostitution as a form of male violence against women that affects the status of women. Child prostitution is illegal, but the community fears it is a growing problem. While many claims have been made about scope, expert reports conclude that such estimates cannot be reliable. For example, a 2002 report by the Justice Institute of British Columbia states: “Due to the illegal nature of commercial sexual exploitation, there is no way to accurately measure the number of children and youth who are sexually exploited for commercial purposes. Estimates of the number of children and youth sexually exploited for commercial purposes in Canada vary widely.
 Media reports claim that Vancouver has about 500 street prostitutes under the age of 17, while some have claimed that many more children may be involved in prostitution indoors.  However, these figures should be treated with extreme caution (see above). The draft law treats sex work as a form of sexual exploitation and inequality (the penal code only deals with women and girls in this legislation).  Since the law was passed in 2014, only 9% of sex workers accused of prostitution are women, while police reports show an increase from 53% to 81% for male sex workers.  Unfortunately, given the wording of the bill, it is not clear whether transgender sex workers are covered by the law. There is very little research on transgender people in the sex industry.  Bill C-36 purports to protect the dignity and equality of all Canadians by prohibiting the purchase of sexual services.  Bill C-36 was strongly influenced by the northern approach to prostitution. The previous majority Conservative government supported banning prostitution. In response to the 2006 report, Prime Minister Stephen Harper stated, “In terms of legalizing prostitution, I can only tell you that this is obviously something the government does not support.”  Attorney General Rob Nicholson also stated, “We are not legalizing brothels and we have no intention of changing the laws regarding prostitution in this country.” But now, Wesley said, the act of negotiating services is illegal. “We have to jump in the car very quickly as soon as it slows down,” she said, referring to the women her organization represents. This means that the purchase of sexual services is illegal and businesses that profit from the prostitution transaction are also illegal.
However, buyers of sexual services are still criminalized because of their role in the prostitution transaction. The new prostitution laws are designed to reduce both the buying and selling of sexual services.