In 2022, Governor Gavin Newsom signed Senate Bill 357, which allows for loitering with the intent to engage in prostitution. Senate Bill 357, authored by Democratic State Senator Scott Wiener, who championed the bill to help protect transgender women from being targeted by police.
SB 357 was labeled “Safer Streets,” but it removes the crime of loitering to commit prostitution. In San Francisco, “Residents have complained of a surge in presumed sex workers along sidewalks and in roadways, traffic throughout the night, and violent episodes.”
California law enforcement notes, “Senate Bill 357 takes away a tool from law enforcement to police our streets and protect these victims by uncovering the criminal operations controlling them. Before this, police could use the loitering law to contact a suspected prostitute, investigate, and intervene — removing the individual from the watchful eye of their sex trafficking abuser. Now that this tool has been removed, more prostitutes will be left on the streets without intervention, and more neighborhoods will suffer the negative impacts of individuals openly engaging in prostitution.”
In National City, near San Diego, “Women wearing only “g-strings” while bending over in front of traffic has become an increasingly common sight… Businesses, ranging from mom-and-pop stores to national hotel chains, have sounded off to the mayor that the prostitutes are driving away business and have forced some businesses to refund families who were appalled at seeing nearly naked women while on their California getaway… Even a local school covered its windows after prostitutes were repeatedly found hanging out near its gates,” National City Mayor Ron Morrison said.
Mayor Ron Morrison told Fox News Digital, “This one has just opened the doors to prostitution, sex trafficking, child sex trading, I mean, you name it. This has obviously done that. And I don’t think anyone that is not just purely politically motivated could disagree with that.”