• Short Summary

    About 2,000 prostitutes from all over France converged on Paris to attend their first national congress on Tuesday night (18 November).

  • Description

    GV Banners over dias in hall.

    SCU Sonia introduces meeting.

    GV Banner.

    SV Ulla speaks to meeting then is presented with bouquet.

    Two thousand prostitutes from all over France turned up to attend their first national congress held in the Mutualite Assembly Hall in Paris on Tuesday night. A girl called Sonia acted as Chairman.

    Another girl Ulla, a blonde from Lyon is forsaking her job while she tries to organise her sisters into a National Whores' Union. The main objective is to gain official recognition and stop police harassment.

    Ulla said that if a union can be formed it would press the French government to come to an agreement by which France's thirty thousand full time prostitutes could be recognised as legal members of the work force and pay taxes like everyone else.

    Initials MV/0405

    Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved

    Background: About 2,000 prostitutes from all over France converged on Paris to attend their first national congress on Tuesday night (18 November). The main topic on the ??? was the possibility of the girls setting up a trade union to protect their interests and to press for official recognition.

    The congress was held in the huge Mutualite Assembly Hall, a well known meeting place normally used for staid political rallies.

    After the meeting broke up the prostitutes' spokeswoman, Ulla, a blonde from Lyon, told newsmen that the congress had been a success even though it was chaotic at times.

    The congress was a milestone for the girls who have startled government authorities with their protest campaign against police fines and harassment. The law not only forbids them to run brothels but also punishes them for plying a pavement trade.

    If a National Whores' Union can be set up its main aim would be to draw up an agreement by which its members could pay taxes and become regular members of France's work force.

    Ulla told newsmen that she would have meetings with other prostitutes throughout France this week to plot the next moves in the pressure campaign for recognition.

    None of the 490 members of the French National Assembly attended Tuesday's congress although they had all received invitations.

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