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Street prostitution

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Street prostitution is a form of prostitution in which a sex worker solicits customers from a public place, most commonly a street, while waiting at street corners or walking alongside a street, but also other public places such as parks, benches, etc The street prostitute is often dressed in a provocative manner The sex act may be performed in the customer's car or in a nearby secluded street location, or at the prostitute's apartment or in a rented motel room

In the UK a study showed that up to 95% of women in street prostitution are problematic drug users, including around 78% heroin users and rising numbers of crack cocaine addicts1 Abuse is often suffered by prostitutes, more than half of UK women in prostitution have been raped and/or seriously sexually assaulted and at least three quarters have been physically assaulted2

A global study of prostitution found that 9 out of 10 women engaged in street prostitution would like to exit if they could3


  • 1 Legality
  • 2 Risks and research
  • 3 See also
  • 4 References
  • 5 External links


Street prostitution is often illegal, even in jurisdictions that allow other forms of prostitution

It is estimated that only 10-20 percent of women are working in the streets; however, it is also estimated that 90 percent of the arrests of prostitutes are of street workers 4

Many countries which outlaw street prostitution have "unofficial" tolerance zones, where the practice is tolerated by the authorities, in spite of its illegality

In some jurisdictions where prostitution itself is legal, such as in the United Kingdom, street prostitution is still illegal5

Some jurisdictions also outlaw kerb crawling, slowly driving around with the intent to procure the services of a prostitute

In Australia, in New South Wales it is legal to solicit on the streets, except in some areas such as near schools The other Australian states and territories prohibit street solicitation, although some of these jurisdictions allow licensed brothels

Street prostitution is legal in New Zealand In Germany it is allowed too, but cities can restrict it to certain areas or hours regulations vary widely from place to place

In the United States, street prostitution is illegal in all 50 states; 49 of the states outlaw all forms of prostitution; Nevada allows licensed brothels, but only in some rural areas, not in the major metropolitan areas only 8 counties have active brothels and prostitution outside these brothels is illegal throughout the state

In six towns in the Netherlands, a special zone tippelzone is designated for legal street prostitution The zone is often in a business park, to avoid inconvenience for residents and can include a sex drive-in afwerkplek In some of the zones the prostitutes need a licence, no new licences are granted as there is an "extinction policy"

Risks and researchedit

Street prostitutes are extremely vulnerable to physical and sexual assaults, as well as to muggings, by clients and pimps Melissa Farley's study of 854 prostitutes in nine countries, including The United States of America, found that 95% of women had been physically assaulted, and 75% had been raped 89% of the women interviewed stating that they wanted to leave prostitution

In a 2008 study of Chicago, USA street prostitutes, economists Steven D Levitt and Sudhir Alladi Venkatesh found that women working without pimps work for an average hourly rate of about $25, and those working with pimps make 50% more This is roughly four times the wage of other jobs available to them Prostitutes are arrested once for every 450 encounters and every 10th arrest results in jail time 6

See alsoedit

  • Solicitation


  1. ^ Home Office 2004a
  2. ^ Home Office 2004b
  3. ^ Farley, 2003
  4. ^ Lucas, Ann September 2013 "Race, Class, Gender, and Deviancy: The Criminalization of Prostitution" Berkeley Journal of Gender, Law & Justice 10 1: 48–49 
  5. ^ S 11 of the Street Offences Act 1959 as amended by section 16 of the Policing and Crime Act 2009
  6. ^ Steven D Levitt April 2009 "Trading Tricks: The Economics of Prostitution" The University of Chicago Booth School of Business Retrieved 14 April 2016 

External linksedit

  • Street prostitution by Michael S Scott, US DOJ Problem-Oriented Guides for Police Series, No 2 PDF file

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Street prostitution

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