section 210(1)


The keeping of a common bawdy-house is punishable with imprisonment for up to two years.


210(1) Every one who keeps a common bawdy-house is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years.


Section 210(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada criminalizes the act of keeping a common bawdy-house. This provision aims to deter individuals from keeping premises where prostitution is carried out. A common bawdy-house is any place that is used habitually or regularly for the purposes of prostitution or the commission of indecent acts. This includes brothels, massage parlours or any other locations where sex work is conducted. The provision serves a number of purposes. Firstly, it seeks to protect the integrity of communities by preventing the establishment of places where prostitution can take place. Such establishments can attract criminal activity, including drug trafficking, human trafficking, and money laundering. They can also be a nuisance for neighbours, leading to increased incidences of noise pollution, littering, and traffic congestion. Secondly, it aims to protect the health and safety of sex workers. Many women working in the sex industry are vulnerable to abuse, exploitation, and violence. By criminalizing the act of keeping a bawdy-house, the law seeks to reduce such harms by discouraging the establishment of such establishments. In terms of criminal liability, section 210(1) imposes strict liability on a person who keeps a common bawdy-house. This means that regardless of whether the individual knew or intended that the premises would be used for prostitution, they can still be charged and convicted for the offence. The sentence for this offence is imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years. In addition, the Criminal Code also includes provisions for forfeiture of property used for the purposes of prostitution, which further encourages the deterrence of keeping a common bawdy-house. Overall, section 210(1) of the Criminal Code reflects Canada's perspective on prostitution as a form of exploitation and violence against women and aims to protect vulnerable individuals while also reducing criminal activity in communities.


Section 210(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada makes it illegal to keep a common bawdy-house. Any person who is found guilty of this offence is liable to imprisonment for a period not exceeding two years. This section of the Criminal Code of Canada (CCC) plays an essential role in curbing prostitution activities in the country. As defined by the CCC, a common bawdy-house is a place where one or more people engage in prostitution-related activities. Prostitution is illegal in Canada, but there is a general belief that its existence is inevitable. Therefore, the law seeks to regulate it by criminalizing brothels, where prostitution occurs. The intention is to reduce the demand for prostitution, deter potential clients, and prevent the exploitation of vulnerable individuals, including underage children. The CC puts the responsibility of controlling prostitution on the authorities and the populace. The law allows the police to search any premises where they suspect prostitution activities. This provision helps law enforcement agencies to dismantle illegal brothels and arrest those involved. Moreover, people who suspect that prostitution is taking place in their neighborhoods can report to the police, and they will take the necessary actions. The efforts to control prostitution have been met with mixed reactions from stakeholders. Advocates of sex workers argue that criminalizing prostitution is unconstitutional and endangers the lives of sex workers. They argue that sex workers are forced to work in risky and dangerous locations, away from the prying eyes of the law. This lack of regulation exposes them to violence, exploitation, and abuse. On the other hand, those advocating for the criminalization of prostitution believe that it is immoral, promotes the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, and is a form of human trafficking. However, the existence of bawdy houses is not necessarily exclusive to the sex industry. There are well-documented historical records revolving around the culture, socialization, and business of these institutions that have nothing to do with sex. These included servant-run pubs, coffeehouses that had multi-purposes such as literary discussions, and poetry recitals, to name a few in historical Canada. The section is a manifestation of the Canadian government's commitment to upholding moral standards and preserving the dignity of the people. As Canada continues to tackle the issue, there are efforts to find a common ground that protects the interests of all stakeholders. Policymakers and lawmakers are coming to realize the importance of striking a balance between the protection of vulnerable people and the respect for individual rights of those in consensual adult sex work. In conclusion, Section 210(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada plays a crucial role in regulating prostitution activities in the country. Although it has faced criticisms from various stakeholders, it remains an effective way to deter the exploitation of vulnerable individuals while preserving the dignity of the people. The law continues to evolve, and there are ongoing efforts to find a common ground that protects the interests of all affected parties.


Section 210(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada is a provision that deals with keeping a common bawdy-house. Before discussing the strategic considerations that should be taken into account while dealing with this section, it is crucial to understand what is meant by a common bawdy-house. A common bawdy-house is a place where prostitution is conducted publicly or where people gather for the purpose of engaging in sexual activities. In simpler terms, a bawdy-house is a brothel where sex workers offer sexual services to clients. The operation of such a business is illegal in Canada and can lead to criminal prosecution. Strategic considerations when dealing with Section 210(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada: 1. The need to gather sufficient evidence: Before a prosecution can be initiated under Section 210(1), the Crown must provide evidence that the accused was keeping a common bawdy-house. This can be a challenging task due to the secretive nature of the business. Therefore, it is essential to gather sufficient evidence before proceeding with a prosecution. 2. Witness protection: The nature of the business can lead to the reluctance of witnesses to come forward, as they may be afraid of retaliation. It is crucial to provide them with protection to ensure their safety and to encourage them to provide evidence. 3. Understanding local attitudes: The attitude of the local community towards prostitution can play a significant role in the success of a prosecution under Section 210(1). It is important to understand the local attitudes and sensitivities towards the issue and determine if an alternative approach would be more effective. 4. The need to focus on the demand side: Targeting the demand side of prostitution can be more effective than targeting the supply side. Rather than prosecuting sex workers, it is essential to prosecute those who create demand for their services. Strategies that could be employed: 1. Undercover operations: Undercover police officers could be employed to gather evidence of a common bawdy-house operation. This strategy can be effective if used correctly. 2. Public awareness campaigns: By raising public awareness of the negative aspects of prostitution, it may reduce demand and discourage potential clients. 3. Successful prosecution: Enforcing Section 210(1) to its fullest requires the prosecution to win cases. By winning cases, the public will become aware of the consequences of engaging in the sex trade. 4. The need for alternative approaches: It may also be necessary to develop alternative approaches that are more effective at reducing prostitution, such as providing outreach and education to sex workers. In summary, Section 210(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada was enacted to discourage the operation of common bawdy-houses. However, strategic considerations such as the need to gather sufficient evidence, witness protection, understanding local attitudes, focusing on the demand side, and employing appropriate strategies such as public awareness campaigns, undercover operations, and successful prosecution can be used to enforce this section effectively. Deviating from these strategic considerations may lead to inefficiency in enforcing the law, and a change in prosecution tactics may be necessary.