B.C. school board rejects group’s bid to recruit strippers at job fairs
A bid to recruit exotic dancers at high school job fairs has been rebuffed by the Vancouver School Board. July 25, 2012. (CTV)
Published Thursday, July 26, 2012 11:07AM EDT
When an official with the Vancouver School Board first heard that an adult entertainment company wanted to visit high school job fairs to recruit future strippers, he actually laughed out loud.
The laughter quickly faded when he realized they were serious.
"When I first heard it I thought, 'Is this an April Fool's joke that I missed?'" Vancouver School Board vice-chair Mike Lombardi told CTV British Columbia.
"It's totally inappropriate, unreasonable and out of the question and they will get nowhere near our schools."
But Tim Lambrinos of the Adult Entertainment Association of Canada insists that strip club owners are facing a labour shortage, and have the right to offer employment opportunities at job fairs held at publicly-funded schools.
"We are taxpaying businesses and legal entities, and there's got to be a policy that allows us to participate in those types of things too," Lambrinos said.
A draft version of a recruitment poster was obtained by CTV News. It reaches out to students who are "visually appealing and comfortable with their (naked) body" to apply for the opportunity to earn money to help pay for their post-secondary education.
The poster guarantees "no actual sex or sex acts to occur."
Lambrinos' view may not be widely shared within the exotic dance industry, however. Danny Fillippone, owner of Vancouver's Penthouse Strip Club, said the approach is "completely unnecessary."
Fillippone said he's never had trouble recruiting workers and disagreed that the industry faces a shortage of talent.
"I think it's crazy," Fillippone said. "I wouldn't be in favour for it either. I don't think that's the route that you even have to go to."
Lambrinos' association insists the initiative is not a publicity stunt, and said members will hand out flyers in front of high schools where job fairs are being held, if they're not allowed inside.
In recent months, the federal government announced plans to crack down on human trafficking by bringing in new laws that allow Ottawa to reject foreign workers at risk of humiliation, degradation or sexual exploitation.
That broad definition could cover exotic dancers, even those who come here in hopes of working in the industry.
According to a report from CTV British Columbia, the Conservatives have seriously curtailed the number of visas issued to foreign dancers. In 2004, 424 visas were issued under former prime minister Paul Martin. But since the Conservatives came into government, just 17 visas have been issued.
With a report from CTV British Columbia’s Maria Weisgarber