General Laws and regulations On Prostitution In Britain And Wales Criminology Essay

'By failing woefully to address home prostitution in the Sexual Offences Work 2003, a much needed opportunity for inexpensive reform of the unlawful law in this field was lost. At best, succeeding insurance plan reviews and legislation have tinkered at the margins; at worst, they have put into the grounds after which the current response should be criticized. ' Discuss.


In 1998, it was publicised by the federal government that there was to be always a wholesale examination of erotic offences and fines. An independent review was duly create and its suggestions were publicized in Setting the Restrictions in 2000. While proposals for reform about the areas of, amongst others, rape and sexual assault, were extensively debated and organized, the review excluded prostitution completely since it was considered to be beyond their remit. But the review committee performed recommend that a further separate review of prostitution be completed, and the Government taken care of immediately this proposal in 2002 by submitting its new plan on intimate offences in Safeguarding the Public, where it suggested the introduction of a few new offences associated with 'commercial erotic exploitation'. Just a 12 months later, a Expenses to give impact to the proposals was handed and received royal assent, which led to the passage of the Sexual Offences Function 2003 (SOA 2003).

This research newspaper will analyse the positive but limited changes designed to the laws and regulations on prostitution by the SOA 2003. Then subsequent plan reviews and legislation regarding prostitution that occurred from 12 months 2004 onwards will be reviewed, detailing both the positive replies and criticisms made towards them.


Before describing the limited changes made to regulations around prostitution by the SOA 2003, it is worth noting down some of the general laws as these were before the Take action was passed. Prostitution itself was (and still is) not unlawful but a lot of the associated activities encircling it are. THE ROAD Offences Function 1959 set out offences which include loitering and soliciting in a open public place for the purposes of prostitution. Sexual Offences Function 1985 managed to get an offence to solicit someone else or individuals for prostitution from a vehicle in a open public place and also created an offence of continual soliciting in a general public place. These offences were very sex-specific. The accused must be male and the solicited must be feminine. Kerb-crawling is an offence under section 1 of the same Take action. Provisions associated with brothel-keeping and associated offences were contained in parts 33 to 36 of Sexual Offences Take action 1956.


The Act does not set up a wide-ranging set of new prostitution-related offences. However, there were a few significant changes to the law

Section 47 helps it be illegal to pay for otherwise legal intimacy with a person who is 16 or 17.

Sections 48 to 50 impose heavy punishments for leading to or inciting or handling or organizing or facilitating child prostitution.

Section 53 makes it illegal to control another adult's prostitution where you get from it.

Section 55 escalates the penalties for owning or running a brothel for the purposes of prostitution.

Section 56 broadens gender-specific prostitution offences, making them gender-neutral. 'Bringing about or inciting prostitution for gain' replaces 'living off the immoral earnings of any prostitute' which could be originally only incurred against men. 'Managing prostitution for gain' replaces 'managing and directing the actions of an prostitute' that could be actually only costed against women. Similarly, the offences of soliciting, loitering and kerb-crawling is now able to be dedicated by both men and women.


Beyond those in the above list, it fails to make any significant changes to the law on prostitution. The Take action predominantly handles the exploitation of folks through prostitution. However the Act will not, for example, decriminalise loitering or soliciting by children who are involved in prostitution. It does not alter the definition of 'prostitution' as signifying a person of older than 18. Unfortunately, which means that a child could be labeled as a "prostitute" no matter any compulsion or coercion. The absence of an intensive review during the process resulting in the enactment of the SOA 2003 means that there are holes in this section of the law such as described above.


Green Newspaper Paying the Price (2004): an appointment document

The insufficient and outdated laws and regulations on prostitution that stood at that time and the absence of a general review in the phases that resulted in the passage of the SOA 2003 prompted the brand new Labour government to create a consultation newspaper in 2004 entitled 'Paying the Price' which lays out information and details of views about how best to control prostitution in the United Kingdom (UK) and what the house Office thought to be important issues for issue. For the very first time in 'over fifty years', the government was offering its first review of all prostitution-related legislation. The assessment document was referred to as going to be 'the starting point for the development of an authentic and coherent strategy to offer with prostitution'. It received over 800 responses and the effect was shared in 2006, which will be considered down the road. It is well worth noting on the outset that although the Home Secretary in those days, David Blunkett, visualised tolerance areas using areas in an effort to tackle block prostitution, it was definately not what the federal government actually finished up advocating. In particular, the government needed stricter regulations on kerb-crawling to place a clamp down on neighborhood prostitution.

Positive responses

The file is praised for stressing on the security of children involved in prostitution, its focus on the maltreatment of fundamental real human privileges in trafficking and the cover it gives to the welfare needs of these exiting prostitution, while deciding the various ways in which other areas of the world deals with prostitution.


However, the appointment paper is not uncontroversial and disappoints many. One commentator details its implementation as involving a 'noisy bark but small bite'.

One of the largest issues with the report was that, despite the fact that it said to be ready for general reform on the legislation of prostitution, considering differing models of regulations adopted by other countries including legalisation, decriminalisation and abolition, its preference to abolition was clear from the very beginning. The file is sympathetic to the theory that women's involvement in prostitution can be reduced by attacking the demand side of the industry by enforcing stricter fines for kerb-crawling that are intended to concentrate on clients. However, it is also important to note that commentators visit a problem in taking on a model from another country and transplanting it into the UK as this may probably lead to the cleaning away of differentials in the social adjustments of the comparative countries.

This lack of focus on the diversity of sex sectors is added by the inability to recognise that providing sexual services are considered to be voluntary work for a few women or men. The review deemed prostitution, all together, as almost equivalent to violence and harmful to everyone without considering the possibility of any different picture of the industry. Phoenix and Oerton claim that Paying the purchase price simply ignores the last five hundreds of years of tolerant attitudes in Great britain and Wales for the real exchange of making love for money, relocating the situation to prostitution itself alternatively than its unwanted effects, that used to be the concentrate of prostitution regulations.

Related to this is usually that the approach taken by the appointment means that there is a failure to place equal focus on providing routes out for women involved in prostitution and protecting those who wish to stay on selling sex as a voluntary choice because they are unable to find other sufficient means of generating income. The fact that the appointment will not take full bank account of most contexts of prostitution suggests that the proposals aren't designed to help all those engaged in making love work.

The consultation record has also been criticised for missing any acknowledgment of the historical legacy and legal construction in which prostitution in the united kingdom exists. Brooks-Gordon identifies lots of key historical prostitution-related backdrops that the appointment has failed to mention. To begin with, it has failed to refer to that the Wolfendon survey essentially differentiated between general public nuisance and morality and that the second option shouldn't be something that the law get worried with. Subsequently, the doc has didn't include seven reviews on sex work by four administration committees between 1928 and 1986: the road offences Committee in 1928, Wolfenden in 1957, the Vagrancy and Block Offences Committee between 1974 and 1976, and the Lawbreaker Rules Revision Committee between 1982 and 1986. Finally, there was no mention of an independent article which was produced by the Parliamentary Group on Prostitution which was led by Diane Abbott in 1996.

But the most crucial elimination would be the European Convention on People Right (ECHR), which became part of English regulation with the passage of the Human Protection under the law Take action 1998 in 2000. The relevant addition would have been Article 8 which protects the right to value for private life, which includes been shown by case regulation such as the case of Niemetz v Germany (1993) to add a person's making love life, and criminalising spending money on sex could show up foul of the right.

Related to this is the fact that the document has didn't consider one of the most relevant models of regulation of prostitution for the UK, that is certainly one of Germany. It's been excluded from the file as a possible model even though it is the most relevant model, designed following the ECHR was integrated into its legislations. In Germany, prostitution is regarded as an economic activity within this is of the EC Treaty which influences the meaning of Article 15 of the European union Charter on Fundamental Rights which accords people with the protection of the 'occupation and the to work. ' This could mean that voluntary prostitution also comes under the Article and that women selling sex voluntarily could not be made to exit prostitution. Similarly, the record has overlooked Thailand in its article, where the criminalisation of prostitution bred problem and organised criminal offenses.

Although the Dutch model, where there exist 'toleration' zones, is one of the models that the document does consider, it simply dismisses the model as a failure because some personnel work beyond your toleration zones. It seems that 'the baby. . . have been trashed with the babywater' and this is unacceptable since it is argued that grey markets exist in virtually any economic market. A satisfactory reason of dismissing such a model would instead be, for example, if murder rates are higher with the existence of tolerance zones than without it. On the other hand, the doc uncritically accepts the Swedish model, where it is just a crime to buy or attempt to purchase sex. But the major problems that contain been caused after the Swedish model has been carried out have been omitted from the examination. For instance, it has failed to refer to that official studies have shown that avenue solicitation has not dropped, and that the marketing has reported that ladies with drug craving have turned to suicide because of the new law. In effect, the demonstration of insurance plan options in the doc shows to be both lacking in balance and flawed.

Another important concern that has been lifted about the report is that concerning the research and research used, that they were very selective and biased. For example, sex workers tend to be marginalised and seen as the 'other'. This status, O'Neill argues, contributes to too little recognition and intimacy workers being treated like a 'pariah'. She argues that there has to be a 'politics of inclusion' so that the voices of love-making personnel can be noticed within safe spaces through inclusive research methodologies such as Participatory Action Research (PAR). The British Collective of Prostitutes in addition has remarked that statistics regarding making love workers are being used selectively. Research that found 74 % of off-street gender workers sold making love because they need to pay for home costs and support their children was described in passing and then disregarded, while promises that 80 to 95 per cent of sex personnel are medication users supply the backdrop of many recommendations.

The coverage reform process acquired also hushed the views and activities of male sex workers almost completely, focusing only on the role of men in prostitution as mainly the abusers of women and children involved with sex work. However the SOA 2003 made prostitution regulations gender-neutral, it is argued that it is not entirely accurate to be let's assume that the same conditions are present for 'men offering love-making to men, men selling making love to women, women advertising sex to men, and women advertising sex to couples', the result of which neglects the needs of male intimacy workers.

Not only does the record not pay enough attention to the voices and experiences of both female and male intimacy workers, it also does not conduct a systematic review of the books on clients. Research books on clients are just brought up six times, five which were research printed over the last century. Clearly, much has been written since the previous century and these have been omitted. For example, recent research on clients shows useful demographic profiles which have important implications on the source and demand for erotic services. Paying the purchase price explains the demographic profile of clients as 'around 30 years, married, in full time occupation', overlooking research by the house Office in Tackling Streets Prostitution that discovered that not even half of the men investigated were married. Also, Tackling Block Prostitution showed that the mean years was 35 years rather than 30. Obviously the omission of recent studies such as Tackling Block Prostitution has resulted in Paying the purchase price quoting inaccurate information.

Another evident area that the report has paid little attention to is indoor gender work. Only in the ultimate chapter do in house markets appear, where the key focus is those experiencing 'serious exploitation'. Also, the discussion document neglected to mention models of policing indoor gender work that are usually considered as successful (NEVADA, Nevada, Germany), at exactly the same time describing only the constraints of the Australian and Austrian models.

In fact, the consultation paper did not commence a full overview of regulations on prostitution. What it performed was concentrate on lots of issues. It desired to prevent teenagers having into prostitution, provide exit strategies for those adults involved in intimacy work and ensure justice against abusers and exploiters for those affected by the industry.

White Paper A Coordinated Prostitution Strategy and a summary or replies to 'Paying the Price' (2006); The Strategy

The result of the appointment was produced in the form from the Strategy, some guidelines which have to be followed by the authorities, local specialists and other businesses that are involved in tackling prostitution.

The Strategy prioritises five key seeks: prevention, producing routes out for making love workers, tackling off-street prostitution, ensuring justice and tackling demand. But the paramount emphasis is to 'disrupt the sex market segments' (Home Office 2006: 1) and this is done by firmly taking a non-tolerant method of the making love industry, deciding on the criminalisation of making love personnel and a tight re-enforcement of kerb-crawling laws.

In fact, before The Strategy was even posted, on 28 Dec 2005, the house Office released through the mass media that a plan of zero tolerance would be pursued against clients. MP Fiona Mactaggart said

"Prostitution blights communities. We will take a zero tolerance approach to kerb crawling. Men who opt for prostitutes are indirectly aiding drug dealers and abusers. The energy to confiscate driving a car licenses already is available. We want the police to make use of that power more".

In relation to kerb-crawling, The Strategy designs a three-staged approach in enforcing the regulations. The first stage would be a casual written warning to owners of car sign up numbers observed in red light districts. The second stage would require a 're-education program' funded by the person arrested, an awareness program that shows the criminal sanctions and impact of street prostitution, but this is merely available to those caught for the very first time. For non-first offenders and for individuals who refuse 're-education' programs, the 3rd level kicks in, which is prosecution.

Medical treatment is enforced on block sex workers to give into result the proposals under the 2007 Offender Justice and Immigration Invoice. And if they do not agree to referral to services offering routes out of sex work, they will be cautioned with 'pre-charge diversion' which will subject the sew staff to guidelines such as compulsory attendance on Medicine Intervention Programs.

Another important change to the law is the re-definition of brothel in a bet to modify off-street prostitution. It is now legal for just two or three individuals and a maid to share premises for safe practices.

Positive replies
The Strategy boasts prospect of positive changes, especially from what is outlined on web pages 3 and 4 under 'action for administration' and 'action for local partnerships'. For example

There is a concentrate on strengthening methods to child exploitation by making sure a holistic methodology that includes work with schools

Inclusion of areas through consultation procedures like community conferencing

Expanding judge diversion and reforming the soliciting law

Expanding the Ugly Mugs system through Offense Stoppers

Recruiting police liaison officers

Development of the action thinking about trafficking


The same sort of criticisms thrown at the appointment record preceding the posted responses within the Strategy remain. You have the same insufficient information that leaves many questions unanswered. For instance, the encounters of male making love workers remain excluded. The sole mention of that one group is merely in an accounts by respondents in the beginning criticising that Paying the purchase price provides 'scant information on male prostitution' (Home Office, 2006:9).

But a specific concern that is fulfilled by a lot of disapproval is the proposal that two to three women (or men) are allowed to work together in the interest of safety. It is argued that the government has overlooked the discrepancy in off-street working, and this problems might come up in regulating such a wide range of premises.

Another step of progress which the Strategy has taken which appears more than reasonable from the outset but is actually inadequate on the closer inspection is the focus on protection against intimate exploitation and maltreatment of children and teenagers. The main problem with this is the fact it reinforces the theory that the young person is only regarded as a victim. There is a opportunity that some will not choose to adhere to a sufferer label and seek to take control of their lives by, for example, calling individuals who groom them their 'friends' and selling intimacy for food and a roof top together with their head. To prevent this and to make sure that young people aren't stuck in a vicious pattern of violent human relationships with the abusers or those who groom them, it is vital for the federal government, local specialists and public welfare businesses to work together to complement the already existing child safeguard interventions with work and housing techniques. Just as how exit strategies are put in place for adults involved in making love work, it is equally as important to design exit strategies that accommodate more specifically to youths.

The to begin the three-staged strategy the Strategy takes in working with kerb-crawlers has also been attacked to be flawed. There is an assumption that the driver of the car trapped on CCTV is looking to pay for making love and the possibility that the car may well not even belong to the driver is ignored. It may also be possible that the driver is only a pal who is presenting a sex worker a lift. Also, it's been argued that mailing words to men at home when they may be innocent could disrupt family life.

Essentially, no new laws have been created with the Strategy. Instead, the existing laws against kerb-crawling have been emphasised as the main element environment for the enforcement strategy in order to change the attitude that prostitution is the "oldest profession" that can't be eradicated.

This leads commentators such as Melrose to dispute that 'the "new" strategy is not very new at all' and this 'the federal government has overlooked an important opportunity to radically rethink its method of prostitution'.

So far, the law on prostitution is piecemeal and contradictory and love-making workers continue being thought of as the 'other' and the sufferer, which posed a barrier to a holistic technique for prostitution reform. Indeed, this problem is reinforced by the laissez-fare position the law has taken up to the term 'common prostitute', which has been frequently called to be abolished and that your Criminal Regulation Revision Committee thought was unreasonably discriminatory to gender workers. There clearly was a need for a wholesale review of the law but The Green Newspaper Paying the purchase price and the next Government Strategy proved to be a disappointment to numerous, especially because of the many omissions and factual mistakes made in the presentation of legal facts and research.

Ipswich 2006 serial murders

Meanwhile, the murders of five prostitutes in Ipswich in November and Dec 2006 reignited calls for a new approach to tackling the problem. Promises that the laws and regulations as they stood were limited which there needed to be a re-examination originated from both those who called for decriminalisation and the ones who desired tighter control buttons. The former advocated that the New Zealand model should be adopted, where seven years back the laws against prostitution were repealed, as it was argued that decriminalising prostitution is a diversion from prosecuting violent men. The second option reinforced instead the model found in Sweden, where in 1999 it became a unlawful offence to pay for sex but not to offer intimacy for sale.

In early 2008, spurred on by the high-profile Ipswich case, the government going by Home Secretary Jacqui Smith announced that it would conduct a new six-month review on ways to deal with the demand for prostitution and visited Sweden to check out its regulations. The findings of the review were published in November 2008 in Tackling the Demand for Prostitution and at this point, the federal government has taken a tough stance on street-based prostitution, declaring that "they are not inevitable; they aren't here to stay".

Policing and Crime Monthly bill (2008) & Function (2010)

The Policing and Criminal offense Bill initially came into being following tips in government reports that showed that there was a demand for an increase of police accountability to the public, but provisions including the ones that deal with liquor, proceeds of crime, gang-related violence and prostitution were later included following the six-month review, turning itself into a comprehensive criminal law monthly bill.

It received royal assent on 12 November 2009 and the Act came into result from 1st April 2010. Part II of the Work concerns erotic offences and intimacy organizations, and the laws and regulations were referred to by the government as meant for protecting susceptible women and dampen the demand for prostitution.

The key changes effective from the very first of April 2010 include

Under section 8, men hunting for sex on the road can now be arrested on the first offence. There is no longer a requirement for the police to be satisfied that the men have been "persistently" kerb-crawling before they could be arrested.

It can be an offence under section 14 to cover sex with anyone who has been compelled, threatened or exploited or otherwise coerced or deceived into providing the intimate services by another person who has involved in such conduct for gain. It'll be no defence for a person to say that they did not know the prostitute had been forced or threatened.

Conviction of the offence could suggest a fine of up to 1, 000, a judge summons and a criminal history. Additionally, there is a risk that the name of the defendant will be stated in newspapers within the "name and pity" strategy that the government now calls for.

Section 16 amends the word 'common prostitute' in section 1 of the road Offences Take action 1959 and inserts the term 'persistently' and 'person' in to the offence of loitering or soliciting for the purposes of prostitution. The changes now additionally require that loitering or soliciting is 'persistent', although it is defined as only two times in a three month period.

On the 'supply' area, section 17 replaces fines with remedy. When sentencing a person for soliciting, a judge can concern an order that the prostitute must talk with a supervisor 3 x within six months of the conviction. This is designed to help them to leave street prostitution.

Under section 21 of the Action, the police have more forces to close brothels. Previously, they could only put a clamp down on premises associated with prostitution if anti-social habit or when category A drugs were involved.

It did not take long for these laws to be applied. Around the first day that the regulations came into drive, two men were caught for having allegedly payed for the intimate services of the prostitute who was simply subjected to force and a female was caught on suspicion of owning a brothel.

Positive replies

For the first time ever, a man will never be able to state ignorance as a defence if he is caught spending money on intimacy. Typical excuses directed at the police before have included: "I thought this was a rub parlour" and "I thought she was over 18". Any explanations and excuses will now be overlooked.

Researcher Ruth Brisling, from the charity Lilith Task said

"the old regulation only found men who payed for sex with a woman aged 13 or under guilty of a criminal offenses. Above that, they could plead ignorance, were given a slap on the wrist and sent home. This new legislations changes that. Pleading ignorance won't be satisfactory and paying for love-making with a prone woman working against her will now be completely illegal. "

Others found that concentrating on clients is the way forward to get rid of prostitution because just relying on laws and regulations against trafficking and pimping is limited. Helen Atkins of the Poppy Job said

"There is absolutely no point in just going for the pimps when there's a potentially limitless way to obtain traffickers and subjects. We have to frighten off the customers. Prostitution is becoming part of the lads' night out - we need to frighten the hell out of these. "


A major marketing campaign group that opposes the changes made to prostitution laws and regulations under the Policing and Criminal offense Action 2009 is the English Collective of Prostitutes, who claim that laws that concentrate on only at women troubled exploitation such as increased police power to close down brothels would drive prostitution, even where no assault is engaged and the intimacy workers are selling sex on their own choice, further underground. They argue that the new regulations risk sex staff to greater hazards and deter them from arriving forward to specialists for help.

The Christian Institute argues that the laws do nothing at all to ensure that the counseling will be insufficient. They assert that 'there is all the difference in the world between chats over caffeine and a properly funded drugs treatment order'.

The strict liability component of the offences is also a cause for matter. The Parliament's Joint Committee on Individual explained it as "extremely broadly drafted" and hazards being incompatible with real human rights. Indeed, this potential for unfairness resulted in even users of the authorities force to dispute that the law criminalising men who purchase love-making with prostitutes who had been coerced would be "very difficult to enforce".

There is proof that new model of making it an offence to cover intimacy with a prostitute who may have been coerced might have unwanted consequences, which is found by firmly taking a close look at Finland's model of regulating prostitution, where in fact the same approach was considered and took result in June 2006. It's been reported that Finnish experts found that the law resulted in the booming of internet prostitution industry in Finland. Liberal Democrat Chris Huhne decided and said

"The Finnish system of criminalising the customers of exploited and trafficked women is a negative model. It has already established an unhealthy record of successful prosecutions, exactly because the women deny a challenge and juries are reluctant to convict when the client says they were misled".


It seems that the reform that has taken place over the years on this section of the criminal rules has led to only the conditioning of the abolitionist standpoint on reselling sex.

But given the complexities that encompass the region of prostitution and considering that there are differing views how the problem should be tackled, for example, there are those who advocate abolition while others prefer decriminalisation or legalisation because of their own different reasons, it is doubtful whether it is possible to modify prostitution in a manner that is acceptable to everyone's viewpoint. Indeed, the recent changes made effective from 1st April 2010 are a big step of progress from the old laws and regulations in the SOA 2003 in the eyes of the abolitionists.

Whether the new regulations will be capable of quashing demand for prostitution and eventually eradicating "the oldest vocation" or will instead, as forecasted by campaign groups yet others, drive prostitution further underground and expose making love workers to even more dangerous conditions, stay to be seen as the law is still new and there's been no or little research on the final results.

However, there exists one important issue that still needs consideration. This marked change with an abolitionist stance in prostitution is going on at the same time when the UK is experiencing financial recession. And interpersonal research into making love work has indicated that selling intimacy is one of the various strategies women deploy when faced with few other realistic economic choices. This past year, New Futures, a group that helps women to leave the industry, came across new and familiar encounters on the avenues and in the brothels in Leicester because the making love personnel were finding it difficult to acquire or keep their careers. So until there's a way to help people who fall into prostitution out of economic requirement, prostitution might indeed be here to remain, especially underground prostitution, now that the regulations are stricter.

It may now be even more complicated to tackle the problem as a result of recent proliferation of books and memoirs of working as a gender worker that paint a 'rose-tinted view of a world where liberated ladies in control of their lives make a mint from indulging men's intimate peccadilloes. ' The most famous example of this might be Belle du Jour: The Personal Adventures of a London Call Female, which includes even been modified into a tv series entitled 'Secret Diary of any Call Woman'. The e book chronicles the true life of Dr Brooke Magnanti, an obscure research scientist who ran out of profit the final days of her PhD thesis and who then made a decision to become a member of a London escort company. Such positive representations of the trade in the multimedia might possibly make it complicated for the government to abolish the supply and demand of commercial intimacy.

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