The Conservative government has introduced legislation to criminalize the purchase of sexual services.
The long-awaited bill would also crack down on those who reap a material benefit from prostitution.
Justice Minister Peter MacKay says the new legislation is aimed at protecting the vulnerable.
The legislation is the government's response to a Supreme Court of Canada decision in December that struck down key provisions of the country's prostitution laws.
While the court ruled the laws were unconstitutional, it gave the government a year to replace them.
Under those laws, prostitution itself is legal but almost all related activities — including communicating in a public place for the purposes of prostitution, pimping and running a brothel — are criminal offences.