Womens Support Project

Challenging Demand

“As long as any woman anywhere in the world is being bought or sold – none of us are free”  Andrea Dworkin

The Women’s Support Project first started to actively address commercial sexual exploitation as part of the spectrum of men’s violence against women, following the International Conference on Violence, Abuse and Women’s Citizenship, held in Brighton in 1996. Our work in this area has included developing and delivering awareness raising workshops and training, particularly around responding to prostitution. We have organised a range of conferences and seminars about prostitution and pornography under the heading of ‘Challenging Demand’, and have taken part in an international survey into the attitudes and behaviour of men who buy sex. From 2008 – 2012 we secured funding from the Scottish Government ‘Violence Against Women Fund’ to develop this work across Scotland. For more information on the Scottish Government approach to tackling violence against women, please click here.

The aims of the ‘Challenging Demand’ work are to reduce the exploitation and abuse of women through commercial sexual exploitation, and improve service responses to women affected.

This will be supported through:

  • Increasing awareness of the definitions, cause, extent and impact of commercial sexual exploitation.
  • Broadening understanding of the spectrum of gender based violence against women, to include commercial sexual exploitation.
  • Building capacity to address commercial sexual exploitation. This will include the development of educational tools and materials, and ‘training for trainers’.
  • Increasing opportunities for networking, information sharing and promoting good practice around work on commercial sexual exploitation through organisation of events, forums, seminars.
  • Increasing opportunities for individuals to contribute to discussion and campaigning.

Money and Power - Commercial Sexual Exploitation in Scotland 

We are pleased to have worked with Zero Tolerance and the media co-op to develop new resources to challenge commercial sexual exploitation in Scotland.  The Money and Power resources comprise of a DVD film (7mins20sec), an awareness raising pack, supporting materials pack and a training pack. View on-line

Money and Power DVD pack (pdf 1.65MB)

Money and Power Supporting Materials Pack (pdf 3.37 MB)

Money and Power Training and Resource pack (3.8 MB)

 For more information on commercial sexual exploitation, go to our information pages

Pleasure vs Profit - growing up in a pornified Scotland.

A DVD (11mins) developed by Women`s Support Project and Zero Tolerance, in conjunction with media co-op.  View on-line.

Thanks to Awards for All and the Scottish Community Foundation who contributed funding which helped make this project possible.

Parents, carers and those working with young people are increasingly concerned about the bombardment of sexualised and violent imagery that young people face every day, and its effects on their wellbeing. `Pleasure vs. Profit` is one of the first resources to make the connections between sexualisation and the creep of pornographic images and values into mainstream culture, and to focus on the situation in Scotland. Accompanying the film is a comprehensive information pack, developed by the Women`s Support Project with support from Zero Tolerance, which provides more information and ideas on how to challenge `porn culture`. The Pleasure Vs Profit pack (pdf 7.5MB)  is accessible here

With input from young people, police and activists, the film exposes how the porn industry manipulates young people`s natural curiosity about sex, and in doing so jeopardises their ability to explore their sexuality in a healthy way and at their own pace.

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