The sexual exploitation of women and children has become mainstreamed. Material once regulated through zoning restrictions (“adult book stores”) is now available at gas stations, mainstream bookstores, hotels, and online. This pornography initiative is one effort to create safe and healthy communities by curbing the mainstreaming of sexually violent and degrading material.
*For our purposes, pornography is defined as sexually explicit material that objectifies and exploits its subjects (predominantly women and children) while eroticizing domination, degradation, and/or violence.
The MN Clean Hotels Initiative is a collaboration between the Minnesota Department of Health’s Sexual Violence Prevention Program and the Minnesota Men’s Action Network: Alliance to Prevent Sexual and Domestic Violence. We are joining others in their historical efforts to create and nurture communities that are safe, just, and equitable.
Call for action
We are asking that business, public/private organizations, and municipalities:
- modify their meeting facility policy to clarify that meetings and conferences will be held in facilities that do not offer in-room adult pay-per-view pornography.
- amend travel policies to reimburse employees’ lodging costs only when staying at hotels that do not offer in-room adult pay-per-view pornography.
We have created a Model Policy that can be easily adapted for these purposes. In this way we collectively remove our support for the mainstreaming of this sexually violent material and begin changing the environment which supports violence against women, girls and boys.
Why target pornography?
Pornography has become increasingly violent. Use of, and dependence upon, violent pornography is associated with higher rates of sexual violence, domestic violence, trafficking and sexual exploitation. Prolonged exposure to pornography (and specifically violent pornography) results in a “loss-of-respect” for female sexual autonomy and in greater risk of expression of aggression against women.
Pornography exposure also appears to negatively influence the welfare of women in everyday, nonsexual circumstances. Repeated-exposure to pornography fosters the acceptance of the notion that women are subservient to men and promotes an adversarial, distrustful relationship between the sexes.
How you can help:
In collaboration with the Minnesota Department of Health, we created several documents that can assist you in the development of policies at your state and local levels of government, as well as private businesses, organizations, and agencies:
- What is the Issue…? an introduction to the connection between pornography, violence and the clean hotel initiative.
- The Sexualization of Harm… a brief compendium of research identifying the harm associated with the use of pornography including the harm caused by the making of pornography, as it relates to women and children used in prostitution.
- LodgeNet…Releases a list of current or previous Lodgenet titles available in hotel sleeping rooms. LodgeNet is the largest distributor of adult pay per view pornography in the country.Please note that the LodgeNet titles are graphic.
- Model Policy is a model policy which can be adapted to local needs.
- The Impact of Porn on Youth
- List of Minnesota “Clean Hotels”. This is a partial list of hotels in Minnesota developed by the MN Department of Health, under the aegis of the MN Men’s Action Network, identifying hotels in Minnesota with 30 beds or greater that provide a pornography free environment. Conversely, here is a List of Minnesota Hotels that sell porn. ( Please see instructions for updating these lists )
- Winona County Clean Hotel Policy
- Winona County Clean Hotel Resolution
- Winona County Clean Hotel Travel Policy
If you have questions or would like to speak to someone about creating a “Clean Hotel” policy, you can contact Chuck Derry, Gender Violence Institute.