Women, Prostitution and Drugs: One Woman’s Story

May 20, 2004 :: Elizabeth Hudson
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Elizabeth Hudson, author of Snow Bodies, is a former prostitute and heroin addict. Her book is a shocking first person account of her years living on the streets in Calgary and Vancouver. Elizabeth takes us with her, in prose that is without shame or explanation, as she decends into the abyss of addiction. This timely memoir is an inside look at what is a growing problem: The use and abuse of women on the streets, drug addiction and a burgeoning sex trade.

Recently the Alberta Government passed Bill 206, which will allow authorities to seize the vehicle of Johns caught soliciting sex off the streets. This new legislation, Elizabeth argues, does not address the real problem. In fact, it makes the streets more dangerous for women in the sex trade. “A real solution,” she argues, “will acknowledge and address the addiction, economic and psychological problems that link women and prostitution.”

According to Elizabeth, prostitutes are rarely seen as fully human and worthy of protection. In terms of social status they are among the most marginalized and the least able to speak for themselves. They have few advocates. It is for this reason that Elizabeth comes forward to speak her truth and share her story. She is a heart-breaking reminder of the horrors that take place daily on Canadian streets and helps us to navigate towards genuine solutions.


Elizabeth Hudson was born in Nova Scotia, and after several moves, her family moved to Calgary, Alberta. She has published articles and poetry in numerous publications such as Maclean’s, Other Voices, Avenue Magazine, and Tower Poetry. Hudson’s two sons have both graduated from University and Hudson now lives in the suburbs of Calgary with her husband, three dogs and a cat.

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