Five Points for Not Legalizing Prostitution in Hungary
Janice G. Raymond, Ph.D.
Co-Executive Director, Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW)
- Legalization of prostitution not only legalizes women in prostitution. It legalizes pimps, brothels and customers. Legalization of prostitution is legalization of the sex industry. Legalization of the sex industry will promote the reputation and reality of Budapest as "the big brothel of Europe."
- The legal sex industry serves as a magnet for the illegal sex industry and organized crime. Illegal brothels and trafficking flourish wherever prostitution is legalized. Germany, for example, has become the destination of choice for traffickers in Europe who move thousands of trafficked women through the country each year.
- Legalization of prostitution has failed in other countries in Europe, most especially in the Netherlands and Germany. It has not reduced trafficking nor has it protected women in prostitution from violence and abuse.
- Legalized prostitution sanitizes prostitution. Suddenly, dirty money becomes clean. Illegal acts become legal. Overnight, pimps are transformed into legitimate businessmen and entrepreneurs. Men who would not formerly consider buying a woman in prostitution think that because prostitution is legal, it is OK to treat women as sexual commodities.
- Legalizing prostitution in Hungary would violate the country's treaty obligations to the UN Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others. This convention, ratified by Hungary in 1955, obliges countries not to regulate prostitution or subject women in prostitution to registration. Countries ratifying the convention pledge to prohibit pimping and the setting up of brothels.
Dr. Janice Raymond
Coalition Against Trafficking in Women (CATW)
Jraymond - at - wost.umass.edu