The idea of ticketing prostitutes for jaywalking has become a hot topic in Saint John and today, dozens of furious citizens took to the streets to express their anger over the motion passed by city council.

AIDS Saint John organized the jaywalking flash mob, jaywalking their way to city hall to show council they don’t think city bylaws should be used to crack down on sex trade workers.

“Everybody has an entitlement to live here. Enough is enough,” says protester Tammy Calvin.

“We’re just here letting common council know that what they’re doing is fundamentally wrong,” says protester Tricia Morris.

“We shouldn’t be centering anybody out in this community, regardless of their background,” says protester Crystal Scott. “That’s what I’m here for.”

The controversy started last week when Coun. Susan Fullerton proposed a motion that would fine sex trade workers under the jaywalking bylaw. Every councillor but one voted in favour of the motion.

University professor Leslie Jeffrey has done extensive studies on Maritime prostitution.

“I think, like many Saint Johners, I was just shocked with this motion in council,” says Jeffrey.

“I think this is a very good sign that most Saint Johners do not support this kind of targeting of marginalized people.”

Julie Dingwell of AIDS Saint John hopes today’s rally caught council’s attention.

“We have heard from other councillors who have said they are sorry, they were caught up in the move, and they’ll do what they can to support us,” says Dingwell.” So, that’s why I think bring this motion back and rescind it.”

The Saint John Board of Police Commissioners is studying the motion further, but not one of the protesters who participated in today’s event received a ticket for jaywalking.

They say that’s the way it should be for sex trade workers as well.

With files from CTV Atlantic's Ashley Dunbar