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Advocates seek Vancouver apology and memorial for displaced West End sex workers | Georgia Straight, Vancouver's News & Entertainment Weekly
'via Blog this'
Monday, July 7
May 8, 2011
- Operation Passageway
- Operation Passageway. Beta test site for NamUs , where volunteers entered the initial missing persons cases. Later used to launch NamUs MP (Missing Persons)
OP was the prototype and initial data source for the current missing persons database. (NamUs)
It launched in August 2007 and completed in December 2008.
List of original team members (all volunteers) that completed the beta trial called Operation Passageway.
ALABAMA --- Todd Matthews
ALASKA --- Todd Matthews
ARIZONA --- Tina Glass
ARKANSAS -- Laura Hood
CALIFORNIA -- Wayne Leng & Vickie Siedow
COLORADO -- Silvia Pettem
CONNECTICUT -- Todd Matthews
DELAWARE --- Todd Matthews
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA --- Todd Matthews
FLORIDA -- Rose Sacchetti
GEORGIA -- Jennifer Cook
--- Dillan Matthews
IDAHO --- Lori Matthews
ILLINOIS --- Kenna Quinet
INDIANA --- Kenna Quinet
-- Todd Matthews
KANSAS --- Dillan Matthews
KENTUCKY --- Lori Matthews
LOUISIANA -- Todd Matthews
--- Lori Matthews
MARYLAND --- Todd Matthews
MASSACHUSETTS --- Dillan Matthews
MICHIGAN --- Terri Cook
MINNESOTA --- Lori Matthews
MISSISSIPPI --- Todd Matthews
MISSOURI -- Ra'Vae Edwards
MONTANA --- Todd Matthews
NEBRASKA --- Patty Beeken
NEVADA --- Lori Matthews
NEW HAMPSHIRE --- Todd Matthews
NEW JERSEY --- Dillan Matthews
NEW MEXICO -- Jennifer Cook
NEW YORK --- Tami Wilkerson
NORTH CAROLINA - Dillan Matthews
NORTH DAKOTA --- Todd Matthews
OHIO -- Peter Duffy
--- Patty Beeken
-- Terri Cook
PENNSYLVANIA -- - Tami Wilkerson
RHODE ISLAND --- Todd Matthews
-- Dillan Matthews
SOUTH DAKOTA --- Lori Matthews
TENNESSEE --- Todd Matthews
TEXAS --- Todd Matthews
UTAH --- Patty Beeken / Todd Matthews
VERMONT --- Todd Matthews
VIRGINIA --- Todd Matthews
WASHINGTON --- Sue Overton
--- Dillan Matthews
WISCONSIN -- Patty Beeken
WYOMING --- Patty Beeken
Operation Passageway launch message
- August 2007
I have had the honor to consult with www. NamUs .gov
in the past and throughout the next several phases of it's development.
The UDRS (unidentified remains) system part of NamUs is up and running. It will be a bit longer before the missing side of things are up and running on the NamUs system.
In the mean time for the next few month I am co-sponsoring things by helping develop this test page www. OperationPassageway .-
It will begin automatically comparing the missing entered into it to the unidentifieds listed in the UDRS system already up and running at NamUs .
The base system was developed by ORA, the same software company that created UDRS . I just had to help tweak it to meet the specifications for missing rather than the unidentified. The two systems can "talk" to each other.
So I'd love to get as many missing cases listed here as possible...it will be a great test of the system and might even kick out some results. The other advantage -- all missing cases entered here, and any other developmental data, will be transferred to the final system when it is up and running on NamUs at some point between late 2008 & 2009.
Operation Passageway will be complete and will cease to exist when the main system goes online, but the data gathered will be safely transferred to the final system. So not only is this a good test run of the UDRS comparative analysis ability, it will help impact the final product once complete. So entering cases on Operation Passageway is like a preregistry to the final national database, a head start on getting cases listed.
Anyone can enter cases into Operation Passageway for the time being. All the data entered is data already out before the public by law enforcement, Once data is entered and validated the system begins the comparative analysis between Operation Passageway and the UDRS component of NamUs . *Unidentified Decedent Reporting System - now known as UP (Unidentified Persons)
This is data entry only. Operation Passageway does not have Area Directors nor does it process any potential matches. It is simply a short term project that tests the real time activity of the UDRS system already in place.
What we do and learn here and now, will indeed effect the final system -- at long last a national database for missing & unidentified persons operated by the federal government.
Published by Todd Matthews
Todd's calling to be a voice for missing and unidentified persons began when he solved the identity of the "Tent Girl" case, Barbara Hackman-Taylor, after a ten-year journey that ended in 1998. View profile
Bill C-36 contains the same flaws as previous legislation
BY IAN MULGREW, VANCOUVER SUN COLUMNIST JULY 7, 2014 5:33 PM
Justice Minister Peter MacKay arrives to testify at a meeting of the Standing Committee of Justice and Human Rights Monday in Ottawa.
Photograph by: Adrian Wyld, THE CANADIAN PRESS
Justice Minister Peter MacKay hasn’t learned from the past and is blithely repeating the mistakes identified by the Supreme Court in the old prostitution law.
While he swatted lob-ball questions from party faithful out of the committee room Monday, legal experts from across the country and others continued to pummel Bill C-36, the Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons Act.
Listening to MacKay testify at the rare summer session, it was obvious he is driven solely by his passion for “ultimately abolishing (prostitution) to the extent possible.”
He has been on a moral crusade since the high court’s December ruling that declared sections of the anti-prostitution legislation unconstitutional because they endangered sex workers, and gave the government a year to fix them.
MacKay has responded with a bill that contains similar flaws.
That’s why the discussion at the Standing Committee of Justice and Human Rights, which continues through Thursday, is especially important for Metro Vancouver, given the region’s significant number of sex workers and its horrific record of violence against women.
The Robert Pickton serial killings played a key role in the top court’s thinking about how prostitution laws put women at risk.
MacKay won’t reveal the advice he received, but more than 200 of the country’s legal minds said in an open letter this week that his proposed legislation stinks because it perpetuates those dangers.
The Criminal Lawyers’ Association added that it was “bad policy and bad law.”
This issue is a Gordian knot — feminists can’t agree with each other, former sex-workers don’t tell the same story, women’s groups voice different points of view ….
Moreover, there is obviously no quick fix and the government’s promised $20 million in programs to help sex workers exit the trade is far, far too little.
Combating prostitution in reality means coming up with solutions that address, among others, poverty, aboriginal distress, addiction and affordable housing.
Unfortunately, too, there are many different types of prostitution — and then there is sex slavery.
Yet MacKay’s legislation conflates prostitution and human trafficking.
The minister emphatically believes prostitution is always “exploitation:” “No one raises their children to be prostitutes — that’s not something people aspire to.”
He sees sex workers always as victims and, for the most part, his aim is to immunize prostitutes from prosecution in most situations while criminalizing pimps and johns.
“The government maintains that prostitution’s inherent harms and dangers would only grow and be exacerbated in a regime that perpetrates and condones the exploitation of vulnerable individuals through legalized prostitution,” MacKay said.
But some of those who choose to sell sex insist he is denying them autonomy, turning them into objects and trampling their rights — who is he to call them ‘victims’?
Émilie Laliberté, of the Canadian Alliance for Sex Work Law Reform, argued MacKay should separate those doing it voluntarily and those forced into it: Sex workers might not be acting completely out of free choice but many people end up in jobs they would not freely choose.
Our culture commodifies sex and for some, sexual capital is the only resource they have, in the same way that back-breaking labour is the only “capital” agricultural migrants have.
“This approach is in contradiction with the (Supreme Court) decision because it criminalizes clients as well as our professional and personal relationships and infringes upon our right to personal safety,” Laliberté said.
She complained sex workers would be driven into the shadows where they would be easy prey for the very predators from whom the Supreme Court said they needed protection.
“I see the same legislation as we had before,” Laliberté said.
That’s what’s wrong with MacKay’s approach — he’s running against the spirit of the Supreme Court decision. And, as with much of his law-and-order legislative program, he has little if any data to support the bill.
MacKay has adopted a similar approach as Swedish law reforms in 1999, but there is scant evidence they have done anything more than move the sex trade inside.
John Lowman, a Simon Fraser University criminologist who appeared before the committee by video conference, delivered an impassioned plea for a more evidence-based approach.
“Most women are not trafficked,” he maintained. “That’s what the research literature says. Obviously there are many, many different experiences and some of them are truly awful. But if we want to talk about the nature of prostitution, we need to understand that there are many different kinds of prostitution.”
A specialist who has done studies for the Justice Department and worked with Downtown Eastside women for years, Lowman said prostitution should be decriminalized as it was in New Zealand in 2003.
He pointed out that in the 1990s the Vancouver Police employed a strategy that was much like the approach in the new bill and all it produced was Pickton’s “killing field.”
Lowman urged the government to send the legislation to the Supreme Court for an opinion on its constitutional integrity.
MacKay dismissed that idea.
In doing so he also dismissed sex workers and others who feel this law will put women at greater risk of assault, rape and murder.
© Copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun