Swedish Law on Prostitution

Arguments for and against Prostitution Including Arguments for and against the Swedish Prostitution Law

This 58 page booklet, translated from Swedish to English by Kvinnofronten/The Women’s Front, Sweden, 2013, can be downloaded here. Topics include what is prostitution: “buying sex from someone who does not want to have sex,” the necessity of viewing prostitution in context, men’s needs, stigmatization of the victim, prostitution and choice, “sex work,” colonialism, children and […]

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Kudos to Corpus Christi Texas and to Captain Floyd Simpson

Women in Corpus Christi prostitution are offered services, not arrested. The police understand that any woman who is pimp-controlled is a trafficking victim. Congratulations from PRE for this humanitarian and cost-effective approach. One question remains: is Corpus Christi also increasing arrests of sex buyers?

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Legalized Prostitution in Amsterdam “has never worked” says a Survivor

Despite claims that legalization helps women in prostitution, in Amsterdam it has led to increases in organized crime and trafficking and has created an environment in which pimps operate with impunity under the title of “manager” or “facilitator.” Far from empowering or protecting the prostituted women, where prostitution is legalized, the women are forced to […]

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“End Demand” Works, Evidence Shows

Almost everyone in the field is discussing legal approaches toward the related scourges of human trafficking and prostitution. Recognizing that prostitution is a form of sex inequality related to gender-based violence, the Swedish approach criminalizes the purchaser, while decriminalizing the prostituted person, and has dramatically reduced prostitution and human trafficking since 1999. The law has also been adopted in […]

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New law criminalizing sex buyers is an important step to abolishing sexual exploitation in Israel

On Sunday, February 12, 2012 the Ministerial Committee for Legislation gave its initial approval to a new bill that targets sex buyers in Israel. The new legislation, proposed by MK Orit Zuaretz, makes paying for sexual services a criminal offense–imposing a sentence of up to six months imprisonment or community service. It follows the model […]

Under New Law, France Would No Longer Be Sexual Playground of Men Like Dominique Strauss-Kahn

In the aftermath of the scandal surrounding Dominique Strauss-Kahn last year, the French National Assembly signed a Resolution that “reaffirms the abolitionist position of France, the objective of which is ultimately a society without prostitution” on December 6, 2011. This resolution represents France’s recognition that prostitution is not sex work that should be legalized or […]

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Prohibiting Sex Purchasing and Ending Trafficking: The Swedish Prostitution Law (2011)

This article by Max Waltman analyzes the Swedish prostitution law from 1999, which criminalized the sex buyer and decriminalized prostituted persons. He analyzes this law as both appropriate and in line with the United Nation’s Trafficking Protocol from 2000, which states that a person is regarded as a trafficking victim when, e.g., someone abuses her […]

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Against Prostitution and Human Trafficking for Sexual Purposes (Sweden)

Prostitution and human trafficking are sustained by demand. Prostitution and human trafficking for sexual purposes represent a serious obstacle to social equality, to gender equality and to the enjoyment of human rights. Trafficking profoundly violates human dignity and the right of individuals to decide over their own lives and their own bodies. The victims are […]

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Trafficking, Prostitution and the Sex Industry: The Nordic Legal Model

There is no doubt that the Nordic countries lead the world on most indicators of gender equality. Gender equality experts and advocates have long pointed out that in economics, politics and social services, the Nordic countries top the charts. A less noticed equality indicator is that the Nordic countries outpace others in legal action to […]

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Prostitution Policy Recommendations to the City of San Francisco

Strongly criminalizing johns is the most effective legal approach to date to the harms of violence and exploitation that prostitution inflicts on those used in it. Many countries, some states, and international law support this approach, which San Francisco could readily adopt, along with other legal and social initiatives building on existing law, policy, and […]

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The Swedish Law that Prohibits the Purchase of Sexual Services: Best Practices for Prevention of Prostitution and Trafficking in Human Beings

After several years of public debate initiated by the Swedish women’s movement, the Law That Prohibits the Purchase of Sexual Services came into force on January 1, 1999. The Law is the first attempt by a country to address the root cause of prostitution and trafficking in beings: the demand, the men who assume the […]

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Streets Apart

In the debate about prostitution, there are those, like the Dutch, who advocate legalising it, and those, like the Swedes, who want to get women off the streets by cracking down on customers and pimps. Julie Bindel investigates the current debate in the U.K.

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One Man in Eight Has Bought Sex

In 1999, Sweden passed legislation that criminalized the purchase of sexual services, which in essence decriminalized prostituted persons and placed penalties only on the buyers, traffickers and pimps. The principle behind the law was that prostitution was to be regarded as violence against the (primarily) women and children and as harmful both to the persons […]

The 1999 Swedish Law on Prostitution

This law is a brilliant example of how a truly progressive society addresses prostitution: the law decriminalizes the prostitute but criminalizes customers, pimps, and traffickers. The Swedish government’s logic is articulated in this brief article.

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