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Sex Worker Accuses NT Police Of Discrimination For Refusing Her Application

Sex worker accuses NT Police of discrimination for refusing her application

A sex worker claims NT Police discriminated against her when it rejected her application to join the force because of her occupation.

The OnlyFans star has filed a complaint in the NT Anti-Discrimination Commission, The Australian first reported.

It will test the Territory’s updated anti-discrimination laws which now make it unlawful to discriminate against someone based on sex work.

Sex worker sitting on bed in sexy outfit

Updated anti-discrimination laws in the NT now make it unlawful to discriminate against someone based on sex work.

Sex worker ‘Recruiting really aggressively’

New Zealander Lisa Lewis decided to move to Darwin and apply for a job with NT Police after seeing an interview with commissioner Michael Murphy.

During the May television interview, Mr Murphy urged New Zealanders to become recruits to help deal with the Alice Springs crime crisis.

“We’re recruiting really aggressively,” Mr Murphy said at the time.

“Anyone who wants to come and join us, please come and put an application in online.”

Ms Lewis provided her fingerprints, identification documents, her driving record, medical records, details of any “declarable associates” and her criminal history.

nt police on patrol

NT Police’s recruitment booklet states that ‘simple offences’ are not a reason for exclusion from the recruitment process.

Criminal history

Sex work is legal in both New Zealand and the NT.

Ms Lewis’s only criminal history involved a a public nuisance charge stemming from a 2006 rugby pitch invasion.

She had run onto the field in a bikini during an All Blacks game.

NT Police’s recruit information booklet states that “simple offences” are not a reason for exclusion from the recruitment process.

NT Police protecting a bottle shop

Commissioner Michael Murphy urged New Zealanders to become recruits to help deal with the Alice Springs crime crisis.

‘Unique profession’

Ms Lewis then received a call from a senior constable who said that due to her “unique profession” her application would need to go before an integrity panel.

She confirmed that she is currently employed as a sex worker and provided further information about her work history.

Ms Lewis told the officer that she still worked in the adult industry “because I need money to live and survive”.

She said she planned to stop working immediately if her application to join the NT Police was successful.

Brendan Muldoon from professional standards later rejected Ms Lewis’s application.

He also banned her from reapplying for five years.

“As a result of your declared history, the panel has determined that your application is unsuccessful,” Commander Muldoon wrote.

Assistant Commissioner Bruce Porter subsequently reassessed her application.

However, he concluded that the process happened in accordance with NT Police’s internal policies.

“All offers of employment are at the discretion of the Commissioner and are based on the suitability of a candidate,” he said.

Lisa Lewis OnlyFans model ART

The NT Police rejected Ms Lewis’ application as a result of her “declared history”.

Sex worker accuses NT Police of discrimination

Ms Lewis has filed a discrimination claim with the NT Anti-Discrimination Commission.

Since July, the number of protected attributes covered in by the Anti-Discrimination Act 1992 has increased to include:

“Employment in sex work or engaging in sex work including past employment in sex work or engagement in sex work”.

Ms Lewis told The Australian that she believed she had been discriminated against because of her sex work.

She said that the police appeared to have a moral objection.

“I’ve always been a loud and proud sex worker,” she said.

“It’s a legal job, I pay more tax than most New Zealanders, I’ve only just moved here and I don’t have anything to be embarrassed about.”

“If it is a legal job in the NT, the NT police have no right to discriminate under moral principles. We’re law-abiding workers, just like any other employment.”

“I just want to ensure the NT police are held accountable for their actions … if they have a history of rejecting sex workers, maybe they should think twice about it.”

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A strong case

Discrimination lawyer Stephen Dryley-Collins believes Ms Lewis has a strong case.

“The law clearly states you cannot discriminate against someone based on their current or former employment as a sex worker,” he said.

“Old fashioned views about sex work have no place in modern workplaces – including police forces.

“It will not surprise me if the commission or a tribunal finds the NT Police have acted unlawfully in this case.

“And therefore it will not surprise me if the force will be ordered to accept Ms Lewis’s application and even pay her compensation.”

Meanwhile, Ms Lewis believes her experience dealing with people from different walks of life in a non-judgmental way will benefit the force.

NT Police refused to comment, telling The Australian it does not “disclose information in regards to recruit applications”.

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