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NT parliament decriminalises sex work

Legislation to fully decriminalise sex work has passed the Northern Territory parliament.

The changes allow the sex industry to operate within all existing laws that apply to other businesses including employment, occupational health and safety, workers compensation, taxation and discrimination.

"All Territorians deserve to be safe at work. Being a sex worker is a recognised profession in the NT, but until today workers have had no protection and minimal rights," Attorney-General Natasha Fyles said.

"I acknowledge this bill and subsequent debate has been contentious for some, but the ultimate goal is better health and safety outcomes for sex workers."

The legislation decriminalises the sex industry in order to improve the health and safety of sex workers.

Previously, laws covering sex work were inconsistent with some aspects subject to licensing and others still considered a criminal offence.

The new legislation will be reviewed in five years.

© AAP 2019