Thursday, September 01, 2005

article:'Dutch prostitution policy is bankrupt'

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I translated this article from Dutch.

The author is a radical feminist. I do not fully agree with her, but what is interesting; she mentions a window-prostitute in The Hague who says most of her colleagues have been coerced into sexwork.

Prostitution policy bankrupt

By:Hester Jansen

It is very difficult to interview prostitutes about their occupation. A nineteen-year-old woman from the Geleenstraat [window prostitution] in The Hague wants to speak: She finds prostitution a normal occupation, but she doesn't flaunt with it. She earns between a hundred and two-hundred euros a day, of which she pays eighty-five euros rent for her window. She works voluntarily, but she estimates that more than half of her colleagues are forced into prostitution. The girl in the window on her opposite is forced to hand over all her money to a ‘loverboy’ [pimp] once she has had a client. For African prostitutes this issue is different: many women from Nigeria for example work under the curse of a voodoo-priest. They have promised never to reveal the name of their trafficker. The one who breaks that promise, will go mad or die. The threats of the wizard are enforced by voodoo-rituals.

The National Rapporteur on Trafficking in Human Beings, mr.[~LL.M.] Anna Korvinus, estimates the number of victims of human trafficking in the year 2000 the be 3500 persons. Compared with the total number of prostitutes (approximately 25.000), this means that at least one out of seven prostitutes in the Netherlands is a sexslave. The numbers suggested by the scientific bureau of the ministry of Justice are much higher. According to the WODC[‘wetenschappelijk onderzoeks- en documentatie centrum’=’scientific research and documentation centre’] approximately half of the prostitutes in the Netherlands are of foreign descent, mostly from outside the EU. It appeared upon inquiry that none of these women have a working permit. It is assumable that the illegal prostitutes depend a lot on their pimp: they cannot determine their own working hours and have no control over their money. Often they live and sleep in the brothels. In our civilized and liberal country there are at least 3500, and perhaps even 12.500 sexslaves.

The prevailing opinion on this question is that getting paid for sex is the pinnacle of emancipation for women. The free and liberated prostitute has a social security number, an accountant, pays taxes and enjoys it to sexually satisfy men. The selling of sexual services is not humiliating according to the influential organisations for prostitutes. The Red Thread even finds the word “hoer”[whore] a “geuzennaam”[a word that was first a term of abuse but now is a honourable name].

Even the mr.[~LL.M.] A. de Graaf foundation [dissolved early 2005], the centre of expertise on the area of prostitution and the advisor of the ministry of Justice, judges prostitution positively. The goal of the foundation is to ‘stimulate the acceptance of prostitution’. Andrew de Graaf (1867-1945), after which the foundation was named, wanted to root out the exploitation of women with every means possible.

At first the foundation targeted the abuses in the sexindustry, but since the seventies the social acceptance of prostitution becomes the objective. The current De Graaf foundation stands miles apart from the original organisation that stood up fiercely against the trade in women and children. Around the year 1900 human trafficking was seen as a big problem in view of the numbers that have exploded in the meantime, but the most important advisory body of the Duth government shrugs its shoulders. Sexslavery is an anomaly in the eyes of the Red Thread and the mr.[~LL.M.] A. de Graaf foundation.

Those who look at the facts, can come to only one conclusion: the Dutch prostitution policy must be altered. The thousands of involuntary prostitutes must be better protected against abuses. The blind spot for this problem can only disappear when we abandon the dogma of voluntariness. Prostitutes on the contrary are often not ‘free and independent’, even when policymakers and whore-hoppers want to see it otherwise. The other side of the coin of the Dutch liberal prostitution policy is sexslavery. It is time to realise that.

Drs. [M.A] Hester Jansen is a historian, member of the ‘Derde Kamer’, a forum for discussion about international cooperation.

www.dederdekamer.org, en has a communication office in The Hague, hesterjansen@usa.net Source: Het Financieel Dagblad, woensdag March 24, 2004 / page 9
2004-03-26 15:26:57

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25 comments:

Jonathan said...

Sorry guy, but I'm afraid that radical feminists are the most untrustable sources of news about prostitution.
I mean: you can be SURE they LIE.

I examined some "documents" coming from anti-prostitution feminist front and found them literally full of unashamed lies (for example, the writings of Janice Raymond or the ridiculous "study" of Julie Bindel and Liz Kelly for the Scottish Routes Out Partnership Board).
Just to make an example of their bullshits, they speak about "more than 15.000 children being prostituted", whereas ECPAT anti-pedo organization talks of no more than 2.000 ...

By the way, I appreciate your worrying about trafficking in the Netherlands, but I think that the 2004 Norwegian government report about prostitution in the Netherlands and Sweden (http://odin.dep.no/jd/english/012101-990578/dok-bn.html)
clearly shows a quite satisfactory state of Dutch prostitution ruling (surely much better than Swedish one!).

Please don't be mislead by professional liers or by sad stories by single prostitutes: prostitution in the Netherlands is well ruled, I had known some prostitutes that voluntarily moved from Italy to Holland just for that reason.

Donkey said...

Yes, that's true. But what's important to me is what the prostitute told her, "most girls who work here are forced", or something like that. It's very telling.

The numbers which Hester Jansen is referring to are slightly more reliable than those of Donna Hughes and Janice Raymond. They are from official Dutch reports. But... they are slightly more reliable, still not very reliable.

I'm thinking about making a FAQ about all the myths and wrong statistics about Dutch prostitution. The "15.000 children being prostituted" is indeed nonsense. Probable, the numbers are not much higher than a thousand. If there's one thing where the Dutch have succeeded it's bringing down child prostitution. Brothels are very strictly supervised on that. The police should be checking more on forced prostitution however. There's no sign that that's declining. Most of the human trafficking seems to be still taking place in legal/tolerated brothels.

I have a question: Do you mean ITALIAN prostitutes by the ones who moved from Italy to the Netherlands?

Jonathan said...

About the numbers, you can easily see the usual lying technique of radical-feminism even in the short Hansen article:
the 2000 to 3500 compared to 25000 (1 of 12 to 1 of 7) becomes immediately "one of seven is a sexslave"!
But that's just the beginning!
Soon, it turns out that "perhaps there are even 12.500 sexslaves"!
About FOUR times the estimated number from the National Rapporteur: then Anna Korvinus would deserve to be fired ... :-)

And in which way Jansen calculates such a figure?
Well, basically saying that "it is assumable that the illegal prostitutes depend a lot on their pimp".
Of course it is! If you are an illegal immmigrant, you depend largely on people who "helped" you to immigrate illegally!

But does this mean that you are FORCED to prostitute yourself?
Not at all.

This just means that a legalization that forgets the needs of immigrants (stay permits, above all) is a half-baked legalization and this opens the door to pimps.
Why? Because women NEED pimps to work illegally, if the legal system don't accept them.
But, again, this doesn't necessarily mean being forced or being treated brutally: in some cases this is true, for the most part there is just an "economic agreement" between the girl and the pimp, often for a limited time.
To say "they need pimps, so they are slaves" is just the typical stupid radical-feminist misrepresentation of reality.

BTW, in Italy we have four studies done in the last ten years, all agree upon a percent figure from 10% to 20% maximum of "slaves" (forced prostitutes).
Judging by some recent journalistic inquiries, there's a good chance things improved a little in recent years, because more and more women are becoming "independent" and in some cases call in Italy other girls, without the need for pimps.

But, on the contrary, the right-wing government we had until this spring was heavily engaged in fighting illegal immigration and that hurted al lot of non-EU girl, increasing the need for pimps!
So, at present we have a quite strange situation in Italy (I created a site just to discuss it! ...), quite unsatisfactory for almost everyone (girls, customers, citizens, police) except ... pimps!

After some year of dealing with these issues, I think that every "slaves" estimate above 20%, in the Netherlands or in other european countries, is likely a fake figure invented by moralists and everyone that asserts that is an incompetent or a liar.
This includes your politician Lodewijk Asscher, if it's true what I read, i.e. he said that "30% of prostitutes in RLDs are slaves".
Quite a dangerous kind of politician, that guy, it reminds me of some italian politicians ...

All in all, I think the best answer to many of your fears is contained in the "Third Report of Dutch National Rapporteur on Trafficking in Human Beings", 2005 (I'm pretty sure you are aware of it):

"Increase in THB after lifting the general ban on brothels?

It is often said in the media that the lifting of the general ban on brothels has led to more THB. This is not a correct conclusion. Before the lifting of the general ban on brothels, THB and other (criminal) abuses were taking place in all sectors of prostitution. Some of these sectors are now under control and can be assumed to have rid themselves of their former criminal excesses, or are doing so. This, however, does not apply to the entire sector. It is possible that THB is increasing in the illegal, non-regulated or noncontrolled
sectors. If this were to be the case, it still cannot be assumed that the extent of THB is now at the same or even above the ‘old’ level it was at before the ban on brothels was lifted. It is in fact likely that this is not the case, merely because not every client is keen to get involved in the ‘secret’ prostitution sector."


This report is in very good agreement with what was found in 2004 by Norwegian government (http://odin.dep.no/jd/english/012101-990578/dok-bn.html)

I trust these thorough researches much more than single stories from prostitutes, ex-prostitutes or prostitutes customers.

It seems to me you don't give to Dutch legal system the credit it deserves: when you build a legal system onto a quite unregulated one, the first things that surface are the bad things that where hidden before.
But that's good news, not bad news.

In my opinion, Dutch system has just one major flaw: it's quite "locked" about extra-EU immigrants. This allow ample room for pimps.
Change that, giving stay permits for prostitution work, and the most of pimps will disappear within five to ten years.
Why? Because no woman will need them, since then.

About italian prostitutes moving to Netherlands:
no, they were from Eastern Europe (Romania and Moldovia), working here in Italy.
The rumanian ones told me a girl friend of her, working in Amsterdam RLD, suggested to join her.
Italian prostitutes usually works in their own flat, they don't need windows brothels (or brothels in general) and don't seems interested in that.

The case for foreign prostitutes in Italy is very, very different: here brothels are illegal, the majority of foreign prostitutes work as streetwalker and they all need (yes: need!) for pimps. They need them to immigrate (often irregularly), to find a home, to have faked identity documents, etc.
If prostitution would be legalized, there would little or no need for pimps.

Again, it seems to me (maybe I'm wrong ...) you don't have the deserved appraisal towards legalization in countries like Netherlands or Germany.
Living in Italy (a substantially deregulated market, with brothel prohibition) and knowing quite well prostitution market in those regulated countries, I know how much desirable (for prostitutes, for citizens ...) is the legalized/decriminalized situation.

Donkey said...

I’m glad you respond!!! I really appreciate that! I noticed that somebody put the Norwegian report on Wikipedia? (Are you a Wikipedian too?? –smile- ) I am the BrunoJunqueira on Wikipedia.

But you’re right. Immigration should be legal. Many illegal prostitutes depend on pimps simply because immigration is illegal. They work long hours, can’t determine their movements, and have to hand over a lot of their earnings to their pimps. But should we as clients therefore have the right to abuse these women because it is the fault of the government’s immigration policy?

I put that article on my blog, not because what Hester Jansen is saying, but what the prostitute is saying. Most girls in the Geleenstraat are forced by pimps. For me, the main message is: stay away from their. I hope that foreign Johns who visit the Netherlands are warned; the legalization of prostitution has not stopped human trafficking. The situation as it is today is probably not very different from the situation prior to legalization.

I support legalization, but not the way we do it. Do only thing the police is doing when they are supervising brothels is checking documents. When the prostitute is a minor or illegal, she is taken out. The children are sent to a Youth Facility, the illegal immigrants are immediately expelled, usually without informing them about the B9-regulation. The police doesn’t check if the prostitute is forced.

But beware! Not all victims of human trafficking are illegal aliens. Many are not. In 2005 23% of the victims of human trafficking registered at the Dutch foundation against women trafficking are Dutch citizens. Early 2006 this number rose to 32%. Not that this is something new, Dutch victims of human trafficking have always been there. We didn’t recognize them as such because typically, these Dutch women are in love with their pimp, and these women don’t go to the police. Several recourses acknowledge that most Dutch window prostitutes have been introduced into prostitution by pimps who use romantic techniques (the sources: the Christian aid-workers organization “het Scharlaken Koord”, the criminologist Frank Bovenkerk, a female police-officer in Arnhem, and several prostitutes I spoke to through the internet). Granted, many of these women eventually break free from their pimps and start to work on their own. But where are those Dutch girls put to work? Predominantly in the regulated window brothels.

How is that possible? Because the sex operators and the police don’t do anything to stop that. And for the simple reason that human trafficking is very lucrative. A beautiful young woman will easily make 300 euros in one day. Within 3 days she has made more money than many people in one month. Don’t be so naïve to believe that criminals will give up such a lucrative source of income!

A percentage of 10 or 20% in the case of Italy is terrible. That means that when you visit 10 prostitutes, you can expect to meet 1 or 2 victims of trafficking. That means that you have raped 1 or 2 women. Of course prostitution should be legalized in Italy. But don’t believe simply because prostitution and immigration is legal that pimps will disappear. Much more needs to be done. According to the criminologist Frank Bovenkerk women who work for pimps can easily work in legal brothels in the Netherlands, while in many cases the sex operators know what’s going on. That should stop. Brothels where human trafficking takes place should be closed down. Right now that’s not what’s happening. Profiting from the exploitation of forced prostitution is illegal in the Netherlands, but the sex operators usually get away with it.

Granted, the number 3.500 is a forgery. Did you know how Essy van Dijk reached that number? (see http://www.politie.nl/Nieuws/Images/32_6540.pdf ) She took the number 203 which are the number of charges pressed by the victims in the year 2000. She multiplied that by four because she figured out that 25% of the victims of trafficking press charges against their pimps. And then comes the biggest mistake: 75% of the illegal aliens found by the police are immediately expelled, she assumes that all victims of trafficking are illegal aliens, and that 75% of these women are expelled before they eventually could have pressed charges. And then she multiplies the 203*4 again by 4 reaching the 3.383 you need, and then rounding off to 3.500…… It’s stupid really.

But the same Norwegian report is bogus too!!!! This report is probably largely based on the report “plan van aanpak ordening en bescherming prostitutiesector”(2004) which draws heavily upon the Korpsmonitor 2003. It states with great euphoria that (I translate): The results of the Korpsmonitor 2003 confirm the presumption that punishable forms of exploitation happen particularly in the non-licensed part of the business. In the supervised licensed prostitution-businesses hardly any abuses were encountered. Here it seems that in the mean time, the reorganization intended by legalization - in the municipalities who have settled their administrative supervision and their administrative sanctioning - is taking place.

The Korpsmonitor is a police report which tries to oversee the several police corpses regarding human trafficking. Well, when the police only superficially checks documents it’s very logical they don’t find hardly any human trafficking in legal brothels! But how is it possible that the National Rapporteur produces such different numbers? Most police investigations on human trafficking deal with legal sex businesses. And I have to stress that most investigations are not started by brothels inspections. This happens in only 20% of the cases.

Jonathan said...

>But should we as clients therefore have the right to abuse these women because it is the fault of the government’s immigration policy?

The fact is: a client has little or no chance to know if a prostitute is forced or not, at least when having just an occasional contact (when you return to her two or three times, things changes a lot ...).
This is similar to going to a pizzeria for the first time and not knowing if the place is run by Mafia or not (after all, no honest citizen wants to help Mafia, right?).
Do you think that it's citizen duty to know if the pizzeria is run by honest people or by criminal? I don't think so.
Obviously, I'll never go to a restaurant or other place if I know that is owned by criminals! But had I to avoid going there just for the (quite small) chance of helping criminals involved in? If it would be the choice, at the end we'll avoid any contact with ANY economic and commercial activity (starting from banks and Wall Street!). I don't think it's a feasible choice.
It's government duty to check legality of market, be it restaurants market or banks or prostitution market.
Of course, I highly respect your scruples, as much as I respect prostitute freedom and self-determination. I remember just a couple of prostitutes, in Italy, that were quite evidently "nervous" and apparently frightened by the situation, if not by someone, I suspected they could be forced and never returned to them.

>I hope that foreign Johns who visit the Netherlands are warned; the legalization of prostitution has not stopped human trafficking. The situation as it is today is probably not very different from the situation prior to legalization.

This doesn't agree at all with official Dutch documents nor with foreign studies.

>I support legalization, but not the way we do it. Do only thing the police is doing when they are supervising brothels is checking documents. When the prostitute is a minor or illegal, she is taken out. The children are sent to a Youth Facility, the illegal immigrants are immediately expelled, usually without informing them about the B9-regulation. The police doesn’t check if the prostitute is forced.

Making frequent checks gives prostitute the opportunity to contact Police.
What else has to do the Police, if they don't receive denunciations by prostitutes or other people in the brothels?
Much better to turn their best efforts to illegal market, then ...

> But beware! Not all victims of human trafficking are illegal aliens. Many are not. In 2005 23% of the victims of human trafficking registered at the Dutch foundation against women trafficking are Dutch citizens. Early 2006 this number rose to 32%. Not that this is something new, Dutch victims of human trafficking have always been there. We didn’t recognize them as such because typically, these Dutch women are in love with their pimp, and these women don’t go to the police.

I think we have a crucial point here: if a girl is "in love" with his pimp, is she forced?
In my opinion the only discriminating fact is: could she stop immediately working as a prostitute, if she wants? If the answer is "yes", she isn't forced, point.
Counting these kind of prostitutes among the forced ones is more than a mistake, is a mystification.

After all, every adult in his mind has the right to make his own mistakes, even falling in love with a parasitic idler and voluntarily giving him money ...
In this case, is wrong even naming him a "pimp".

There is another fact you have to take in account: it's probably easier for a Dutch prostitute to ask for help to the Police, rather an immigrant one (even with stay permit). This involves fears, culture, language, knowledge ...
So that number about Dutch victims could easily be (in good faith) biased.

>How is that possible? Because the sex operators and the police don’t do anything to stop that. And for the simple reason that human trafficking is very lucrative. A beautiful young woman will easily make 300 euros in one day. Within 3 days she has made more money than many people in one month. Don’t be so naïve to believe that criminals will give up such a lucrative source of income!

Every source I've read points out the shift of pimps from legal to illegal (and still largely hidden) market, for obvious reasons.
I think Police has to focus more on this market, rather than legal brothels.


>A percentage of 10 or 20% in the case of Italy is terrible.

That's one of the reason why we would need legal brothels.
But, to put things in the correct light, you have to know that in Italy the usual story that newspapers, TV and ... priests tell to the public is: "EVERY foreign prostitute is a slave!".
I've created my site primarily to fight that unashamed lie, that tries to prevent every form of legalization in Italy.

>According to the criminologist Frank Bovenkerk women who work for pimps can easily work in legal brothels in the Netherlands, while in many cases the sex operators know what’s going on. That should stop. Brothels where human trafficking takes place should be closed down. Right now that’s not what’s happening. Profiting from the exploitation of forced prostitution is illegal in the Netherlands, but the sex operators usually get away with it.

I don't think that Dutch law allows sex operators to hide to the Police the fact there are forced girls.
Do you mean the brothel owners involved in those cases of trafficking didn't have troubles with justice, even if recognized they know the trafficking? I hardly could believe that ...

Moreover, if what you assert is true, it seems to me there are just two possibilities:
- Police is stupid, they don't know how to discover trafficking
- Police is corrupt, they don't even try to discover trafficking

Frankly, I've never thought that Dutch police, moreover accustomed to prostitution market since many years, could be in a similar state ... ;-)
As far as I know, Dutch policemen involved in dealing with prostitution and trafficking have to be trained quite thoroughly.

>But the same Norwegian report is bogus too!!!!

The Norwegian report is based on many documents and many interviews by the working group. the Korpsmonitor isn't explicitely mentioned it the english short version.
Anyway, it's true that that they report that the most critical thing isn't the legal market but the illegal market (and the situation of illegal immigrants), because of the shift of the main criminal forces to the hidden market.
This is in very good agreement with the findings of the National Rapporteur and I think it will be a good thing if Dutch Police looks carefully at hidden market now.

By the way, I'm quite amazed (no, not really ... :-) that radical-feminists (I usually call them nazi-feminists or fascio-feminists) seems to fully ignore the Norwegian report, i.e. they pretend to ignore it's mere existence, let's alone being able to contest it with rational arguments.
Please, ask yourself why ...

Donkey said...

As far as I know, Dutch policemen involved in dealing with prostitution and trafficking have to be trained quite thoroughly (…)The Norwegian report is based on many documents and many interviews by the working group. The Korpsmonitor isn't explicitely mentioned it the english short version.

All these reports you mention, even the reports of the National Rapporteur, when they say that human trafficking or illegal immigrants have shifted from the legal to the illegal domain, they never corroborate this with numbers.

First, the illegal prostitutes. I have looked at the reviews on hookers.nl, a consumers site for Johns. There are still as many Russians, Albanians, Bulgarians, Latin Americans, etc compared to the situation before legalization. The only difference is that there now are far less Africans. Don’t get me wrong; I believe foreign prostitutes should have the right to work here.

Look carefully at the Norwegian report. When they say that human trafficking has moved into a “grey area”, they never tell the reason why they believe that. Funny thing is that the Korpsmonitor 2003 is not in the literature list, but it is this report where they are indirectly referring to. The “plan van aanpak ordening en bescherming prostitutiesector” is mentioned in the Norwegian report, this report refers to the Korpsmonitor 2003 when they use the argument that abuses have shifted to the illegal domain.

Maybe I should quote what’s in the Korpsmonitor 2003. I’ll show you the situation in Amsterdam in 2003:
http://www.justitie.nl/Images/Korpsmonitor2003%20rapport_tcm74-39642.pdf
The tippelzone and window prostitution is more or less ‘under control’, be it that it has to be noticed that this observation limits itself to abuses like: illegality, minority and false documents. To gain insight into ‘classical exploitation’ this form of contact is too superficial. About the presence of the human trafficking phenomena there can therefore be no pronouncement based on sufficient facts.

It’s exactly like I told you. They only check documents. And they admit that they can never detect human trafficking this way.

Unfortunately I haven’t read the Wagenaar report, which you have to pay for (15 dollars for one day!!!):
http://aas.sagepub.com/cgi/framedreprint/38/2/198

But I can bet this report is (indirectly) based on the Korpsmonitor 2003 too.

The evidence that these claims are false are in the third and fourth report of the national rapporteur. Strangely enough the rapporteur steps over this date and draws no conclusions. Crucial data is hidden in a footnote (see page 14, footnote 17, most sex establishments involved are licensed:”A total of 54 sex establishments [in 2003] were involved in the successfully completed investigations into THB, of which 19 were unlicensed. In 2002 this figure was 140, 38 of which were unlicensed.”). Look at the numbers in table 3.11:
http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels4.pdf
Human trafficking in window prostitution is still significant. And you have seen my quote from the third report. Most human trafficking cases are related to legal brothels. However the most recent data is from the year 2003, while now it’s 2006. The national rapporteur is very slow. It is possible that things have shifted since 2004, it remains to be seen.

The latest data relating to the involvement of legal brothels is from 2004. Bovenkerk states in 2004 that the Dutch victims of human trafficking work predominantly in window prostitution, which is largely legal.

This is similar to going to a pizzeria for the first time and not knowing if the place is run by Mafia or not
A woman is not a pizza. I’ve heard this argument a lot. It basically goes like this: Many products in the world are made by slaves (even children). Yet, we all know this, and we still buy those products. Then the conclusion is: why should we care if the prostitute we visit is a slave? I don’t agree with that. First of all, if we use this reasoning for prostitution, it also becomes okay the abuse a child prostitute (many other “products” in the world are made by children anyway). Second of all, when we buy – for instance- a t-shirt, we buy a t-shirt. We buy a ‘thing’. In prostitution you directly penetrate the (possible) victim against her will. In buying a t-shirt you are (potentially) “indirectly” involved in a crime. With prostitution this happens “directly”. You “directly” violate the victim’s body. It’s rape. Remember, under normal circumstances this would never be tolerated. Only because you “pay”, you can get rid of your “consumers” responsibility. That’s the difference.

Making frequent checks gives prostitute the opportunity to contact Police.
Prostitutes generally don’t trust the police.

I think we have a crucial point here: if a girl is "in love" with his pimp, is she forced?
No, she is “deceived”. Imagine this: Let’s say that you desperately want to have sex with a certain woman. But this woman doesn’t want to have sex with you, she doesn’t like you at all. But, you know that this woman is in love with a very good friend of yours. Then your friend has a plan. He will get romantically involved with this woman, in order to persuade her to have sex with you. This woman is very naïve. Your friend tells her that he owes you 3000 dollars and that you are very aggressive. I he won’t pay, he tells her you’ll beat him up. But, he says to her, if she has sex with you, he doesn’t have to give you the money. The woman is terribly in love with your friend, and wants to de everything to help him, and then she has sex with you. Indeed, she is not forced. But you have to admit this is a very “immoral” thing to do, isn’t it?

Do you mean the brothel owners involved in those cases of trafficking didn't have troubles with justice, even if recognized they know the trafficking? I hardly could believe that ...
Many times the brothel owners get away with it.
Look at table 3.8 (page 14) in:
http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels4.pdf
In most cases proprietors are aware of the situation or are traffickers themselves. On the same page (page 14) it is said that in 2003 against 4 proprietors administrative proceedings had been initiated. Not many if you know that 41 proprietors were involved.

A quote from hookers.nl from a client (very recent, 30-6-2006, translated into English):
This proprietor has multiple buildings on de Wallen and I find it very coincidental that behind his windows there are girls with “Greek” and “Italian” passports. Aside from that, the frequency of blue spots concerning the ladies is relatively high and clients of these ladies are cheated in the first place and are subsequently awaited by their pimps. These guys ruin de Wallen!!! It wouldn’t surprise me of these pimps and the proprietors of the buildings work closely together and put pressure on those ladies and snatch money or else they will be “informed” [to the pimps].

Another quote (from a client, no translation, already in English): 16-8-2005
have just spoken to a young lady from Alkmaar who has not worked since Friday and today goes back to her own country for a _long_ holiday. Possibly a change of scene too.
The reason is, the incredible pimp-pressure being experienced in alkmaar at the moment.
Apparently, most of the girls in the Achterdam are working for pimps. That is ALL money going to the pimp, not just a"tax".
Usually, most of these little shits are easy to handle. threats to call the poilice are enough to frighten them off.
Unfortunately, recently a real bad bastard has got out of jail and he is going round Alkmaar recruiting all of his old (and new) chickens back to the fold.
This guy is not subtle, it starts with "I want to know how much for 20 minutes" followed by "I love you I want you to be my woman, I will look after you" followed by "If you don't, bad things will happen to you" followed by "I know where your Sister/Brother/Boyfreind etc lives, its at ............ and bad things are going to happen".
This particular little pratt is about 4 foot f5 inches and reputed to be wealthy with many thugs working for hiim. Tell the Police and.....well, guess.
Personally I think he is a joke with lots of embellished stories about him by lots of frightened little girls. However the point is, that the Achterdam has been suffering from this for some time. That is why the girls don't stay around very long. Apart from the bad ones.
These girls come from countries where you sort your own problems. You protect your family, you do a deal and you NEVER go to the Poilce. These Pimps take tremendous advantage of their lack of knowledge and their isolated position.
If I were the owner of the Achterdam, I would protect my own territory by stamping hard on these useless little parasites. The Police do what they can, so why can't the offices and Kamer owners do what they can to protect their own business and give Alkmaar the shot in the arm it deserves.

Jonathan said...

All these reports you mention, even the reports of the National Rapporteur, when they say that human trafficking or illegal immigrants have shifted from the legal to the illegal domain, they never corroborate this with numbers.

If they presented numbers, it would mean that police knows almost all cases of trafficking in the illegal domain, well enough to give a quantitative estimate, and that is obviously can't be true.
Saying "there is a shift to illegal market" could mean (it means, I believe) that prosecutors think legal market is becoming more and more "clean".
Maybe they are wrong ...

There are still as many Russians, Albanians, Bulgarians, Latin Americans, etc compared to the situation before legalization. The only difference is that there now are far less Africans.

Looking at the http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels4.pdf , it seems that genuine passport are increasing even among victims, so I think you can't consider them illegally trafficked.
AFAIK, there were even some bilateral agreements between the Netherlands and some foreign countries (especially from eastern Europe) for prostitutes immigration, am I right?

Maybe I should quote what’s in the Korpsmonitor 2003. I’ll show you the situation in Amsterdam in 2003:
http://www.justitie.nl/Images/Korpsmonitor2003%20rapport_tcm74-39642.pdf
The tippelzone and window prostitution is more or less ‘under control’, be it that it has to be noticed that this observation limits itself to abuses like: illegality, minority and false documents. To gain insight into ‘classical exploitation’ this form of contact is too superficial. About the presence of the human trafficking phenomena there can therefore be no pronouncement based on sufficient facts.

It’s exactly like I told you. They only check documents. And they admit that they can never detect human trafficking this way.


This conflicts with the fact that a large part of discovered THB, as you pointed out, is in the legal market.
So, it seems to me that the report just say "we are not effective enough", not that "we'll never detect trafficking in brothels".

The evidence that these claims are false are in the third and fourth report of the national rapporteur. Strangely enough the rapporteur steps over this date and draws no conclusions.

It doesn't seems to me the National Rapporteur draws no conclusion or that denies those claims. It simply doesn't have the figures to substantiate those claims, but it also explains why.
Chapter 9.9 of http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels3.pdf is quite clear, although it's evident the forced lack of quantitative data (at present):
"the effect [of brothel legalization on THB] cannot be measured. Firstly, this is because the situation relating to THB before the lifting of the ban is unknown, and secondly ... [etc]"
"the media often report that the lifting of the general ban on brothels has led to more THB. This is in any case not a correct conclusion."
"A variety of studies and signals do show that THB is moving into the illegal, nonregulated and difficult-to-control prostitution sectors, although the extent to which this is happening is unknown. This does not necessarily mean, however, that the extent of THB is now at or even above the ‘old’ level it was at before the ban on brothels was lifted. In fact, it is plausible that this is not the case, if only because not every client is attracted to this ‘secret’ prostitution sector."
"the number of investigations that the police started up (and successfully completed) ‘after’ the ban was lifted is much higher than before (37 investigations ‘before’ and 79 investigations ‘after’ the ban was lifted), although the average number of persons arrested in each investigation fell after the ban was lifted.[...] This rise makes clear, however, that the police and the PPS have made considerable efforts (in spite of capacity shortages) to investigate and prosecute THB. Furthermore, in the opinion of police officers there are fewer malafide proprietors of sex establishments in the legalised prostitution sector now than before the general ban on brothels was lifted."


On the whole, it seems to me that legalization turned upside down the stone and exposed the worms under that. That was surely a desired effect of brothel ban lifting, so no "failure" here.
I'm sure a lot of work has still to be done, but that's no way a "legalization bankrupt" case.


Crucial data is hidden in a footnote (see page 14, footnote 17, most sex establishments involved are licensed:”A total of 54 sex establishments [in 2003] were involved in the successfully completed investigations into THB, of which 19 were unlicensed. In 2002 this figure was 140, 38 of which were unlicensed.”). Look at the numbers in table 3.11:
http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels4.pdf
Human trafficking in window prostitution is still significant. And you have seen my quote from the third report. Most human trafficking cases are related to legal brothels.


Not to underrate these figures, but in my opinion you should consider that is certainly easier to check the legal market than the illegal one, so you have to consider a sure statistical bias.

This is similar to going to a pizzeria for the first time and not knowing if the place is run by Mafia or not

A woman is not a pizza. I’ve heard this argument a lot. It basically goes like this: Many products in the world are made by slaves (even children). Yet, we all know this, and we still buy those products.


Not at all: I'd never buy a pair of shoes if I know are made by slaves.

Then the conclusion is: why should we care if the prostitute we visit is a slave? I don’t agree with that.

That's not the point.
I'd never buy a wristwatch from a receiver of stolen goods, if I'd know that guy is such a criminal, nor in a dubious dark shop, because I can assume there is a high chance that wristwatch is stolen.
But no once can convince me that if I buy a Rolex in a shining shop at centertown, which is reasonably checked by Police at least once a month, it's MY FAULT if it comes out that watch is a stolen good!

A legal brothel is (or should be) just like that shining (and frequently checked) shop.

First of all, if we use this reasoning for prostitution, it also becomes okay the abuse a child prostitute (many other “products” in the world are made by children anyway).

Wrong (and badly wrong): we can be sure a child cannot defend himself, so we never can't optimistically assume a child prostitute is "volunteer". That is the reason why having sex with children (not just child prostitutes) is always wrong. Sorry you used this argument, which is false and rhetorical. I think you can do much better.

Second of all, when we buy – for instance- a t-shirt, we buy a t-shirt. We buy a ‘thing’.

When buying a "thing" made by a slave, you extend his slavery. I think you deceive yourself if you think otherwise.

In prostitution you directly penetrate the (possible) victim against her will. In buying a t-shirt you are (potentially) “indirectly” involved in a crime. With prostitution this happens “directly”. You “directly” violate the victim’s body. It’s rape.

Sorry, I've heard your argument many times and I disagree: except for underage or very young and unexperienced girls, the real hurt made to a slave prostitute is not "penetration" and the sexual act in itself, the real damage is her lack of freedom.
You give too much importance to the physical part (it reminds me how here in Italy many catholic people are obsessed, in a negative mood, by the physical part of sexuality. Of course I'm not saying that's your idea).
Prostitutes with some experience (even when volunteer) don't consider that a really important thing. If it would be the case, if they had an emotional involvement every time they had sex wit a customer, I think they could became mad!
That's not the case.
Looking at prostitute's sex in the same way as you look at "normal" sex it as much wrong as looking at boxing in the same way as punches in a brawl.

That doesn't mean be insensitive to prostitute's feelings, it just means to look at the reality.
After all, no customer in his mind would ask a prostitute to have the same "feelings" toward him as a non-prostitute girl.

Remember, under normal circumstances this would never be tolerated. Only because you “pay”, you can get rid of your “consumers” responsibility. That’s the difference.

Frankly, I think that the "penetration" difference you point out is just an emotional feeling.
I respect it, but I think is really misleading speaking about sex as a job. i.e. "mechanical sex".
But if you really believe to that, if you think that every sexual act made when the prostitutes is not willing is a violence, you should be against ALL prostitution, not just forced prostitution, because very few prostitutes amuse themselves when having sex with a customer.

Of course, there is a big difference between having not amusing sex for choice or for constriction: but the difference is between "choice" and "costriction", not between "joyful sex" and "sad sex", nor between "no penetration" and "penetration".

Making frequent checks gives prostitute the opportunity to contact Police.
Prostitutes generally don’t trust the police.


Foreign and illegal prostitutes, even when trafficked, are reluctant to address to Police but they could at least address to other helping organizations (there are many in Italy, I believe there are many in the Netherlands, too).
I think that a Dutch prostitute should have much less fear or mistrust about the Police.

I think we have a crucial point here: if a girl is "in love" with his pimp, is she forced?

No, she is “deceived”. [...] Indeed, she is not forced. But you have to admit this is a very “immoral” thing to do, isn’t it?


Absolutely.
Just please don't count her among the slaves, otherwise we made a mess mixing up very different things (that's a quite usual nazi-feminist technique, I'm sure you don't follow that way).

Do you mean the brothel owners involved in those cases of trafficking didn't have troubles with justice, even if recognized they know the trafficking? I hardly could believe that ...

Many times the brothel owners get away with it.
Look at table 3.8 (page 14) in:
http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels4.pdf
In most cases proprietors are aware of the situation or are traffickers themselves. On the same page (page 14) it is said that in 2003 against 4 proprietors administrative proceedings had been initiated. Not many if you know that 41 proprietors were involved.


I agree. It seems there is still some way to do to clean windows brothels.

It seems to me that a big difference from you and me is that you see the half empty glass, I see the half full glass.

Only criticism I have to do about your point of view is that it's in a high risk of helping (or being confused with) anti-legalization ideas.
Making step backwards from legalization in the Netherlands would be a capital mistake and an unjustified one, IMHO.
Moreover, the opposite Swedish "solution" is really going bankrupt.
Just a few weeks ago and despite a lot of pressure from radical-feminists, even Finnish parliament refused to follow the Swedish path about prostitution.

Just let's make thing goes better and better in the Netherlands.
Pointing out things that works badly can be a way to push in the right direction, but I think if this is the goal, one has to be very careful not to be confused with illiberal positions, that are spreading nowadays.

Donkey said...

Don’t worry, we are on the same side.

What I’m trying to do with my blog is raising awareness among pro-prostitution-advocates about the position of clients. Unfortunately, my blog is still a bit messy, and I don’t know which direction I should go.

The prostitution debate is divided in two extremist groups. Pro and contra. The contras see prostitution intrinsically as abuse, and clients as rapists. The advocates on the contrary see it as self-determination but don’t think about the clients at all. That’s what’s worrying me. When I visited the RLD in Amsterdam I had no idea. I believed that prostitution is now legal everything should be fine. A prostitute I visited revealed to me that many prostitutes who work there have pimps. I still wanted to visit prostitutes and began to look if there’s information about venues where there’s a guarantee the prostitute you visit is okay. Such information isn’t there. There’s no information about the scale of human trafficking, and where it takes place. How do you recognize a victim of human trafficking? No information. It made me angry and at one point I totally turned against prostitution. You still see some remnants of that in the way that I speak about prostitution.

I still try to find ways to reach my goal. Maybe one day, I’ll visit a prostitute again when I’m sure. If I take all statistics very literally then my provisional conclusion is that human trafficking is rare among Thai, Latin American and Dutch prostitutes. Exceptions are Dutch prostitutes who work behind windows. There are many Thai and Latin American prostitutes in the Netherlands, but they rarely show up in the statistics as victims of human trafficking. Generally these prostitutes are older. (On average they are older than 30) Eastern European and African prostitutes however are very dependent on pimps. Very few of them work independently. Their situation for many of them comes very close to slavery.
Victims of human trafficking generally are younger women. The chance that the prostitute you visit is trafficked decreases steadily when the prostitute is older.

I could be really simple for clients, when you visit an older prostitute (that means older than 40), and when you avoid the windows and Eastern European and African prostitutes, the chance you’ll encounter a victim of human trafficking is very small. (there’s always a chance)

But lately I’m doubting again. In the Dutch version of the “fourth report of the national rapporteur” (those two versions differ), there is mention of Brazilian NGO’s who notice that a large percentage of victims of human trafficking who have returned have been exploited in the DUTCH SEXINDUSTRY!!!! It puzzles the national rapporteur because Brazilian women rarely show up in our statistics. It puzzles me too.

And I have thought for a long time that Dutch prostitutes who work in their own home are very rarely forced. You’ll never hear of that. Recently a Dutch prostitute (who works in her own apartment) told me that she regularly witnesses “housewives” who are forced by their husbands!!!

So, I’m in sort of a crisis.

- The loverboys –

Just please don't count her among the slaves, otherwise we made a mess mixing up very different things (that's a quite usual nazi-feminist technique, I'm sure you don't follow that way

That’s funny. In the Netherlands it is well established that these type of pimps are human traffickers.

Believe it or not, but read the “fourth report” carefully. The Dutch law.
http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels3.pdf
by force, violence or other act, by the threat of violence or other act, by extortion, fraud, deception or the misuse of authority arising from the actual state of affairs, by the misuse of a vulnerable position or by giving or receiving remuneration or benefits in order to obtain the consent of a person who has control over this other person recruits, transports, moves, accommodates or shelters another person, with the intention of exploiting this other person or removing his or her organs;

According to the law, “deceiving” somebody into prostitution is human trafficking too.

But your right. I am a prude. During my life (I’m almost thirty), I only have had sex with the three prostitutes I have visited as a John. For me it’s really special.

And the Swedish situation? There are 2.500 prostitutes compared to a population of 9 million. In the Netherlands we have 25.000 prostitutes compared to a population of 16 million. The scale in the Netherlands is more than 5 times higher. I think the Swedish prostitutes are doing fine. The police are not bothering them (the prostitutes themselves are not committing are crime), and pimps are rare is Sweden. I think it’s cultural. I’m very curious about what would happen if prostitution becomes legal in Sweden. I believe Sweden is actually the perfect country to legalize prostitution because pimps are so rare. I wished the situation in the Netherlands was like in Sweden.

Donkey said...

+ of I forgot, I haven't finished my story. Probably in 2007 Bulgaria and Rumania will join the EU. And simultaneously all restrictions against Eastern European workers will be lifted. Many victims of human trafficking in the Netherlands come from Bulgaria and Rumania. In 2007 there will be an ideal situation for prostitutes from these countries. They can now work fully legal in the Netherlands. I hope finally these women can break free from their pimps.

Donkey said...

That's three messages in a row from Donkey.

Jonathan said...

Don’t worry, we are on the same side.
What I’m trying to do with my blog is raising awareness among pro-prostitution-advocates about the position of clients. Unfortunately, my blog is still a bit messy, and I don’t know which direction I should go.


For my site, I choose a "traditional" web site (web pages + forum) over a blog because I thought it was clearer end easier to read than a blog.
Of course, it's a little bit harder to manage and update but the Forum is a powerful way to publish fresh news and discussions.

Victims of human trafficking generally are younger women. The chance that the prostitute you visit is trafficked decreases steadily when the prostitute is older.

I saw the figures you draw out of statistics, quite an interesting work. I've learned that re-elaborating official statistics is often a good way to discover things (in some case denying the assertion made by who published those figures!).

And I have thought for a long time that Dutch prostitutes who work in their own home are very rarely forced. You’ll never hear of that. Recently a Dutch prostitute (who works in her own apartment) told me that she regularly witnesses housewives who are forced by their husbands!!!

I doubt there are so many cases like that ...
Even here in Italy there is almost unanimous agreement (even from Catholich Church ...) that italian prostitutes working at home are practically free from coercion.

So, I’m in sort of a crisis.

I can understand that.

Only thing I feel right to say to you is: you are doing a good work using public and official statistics, so beware of anecdotal tales, such as stories heard from single people (prostitutes, self-claimed ex-prostitutes, clients, pretended ex-clients etc.).
I'm not saying those are lies, I have no reason to say that about single cases. I'm just saying that often those claims are very biased and partial points of view.
Moreover, usually happy people don't go around saying "Hey, my job is good and also my friends think so!", you have much more chance to find sad people complaining (just the same thing that happens on the net about every piece of hardware or software on the market: you hear just the complaints, quite seldom the satisfacted owners).
That's the reason why I'm much, much more confident in public and broad statistical researches than in collecting single stories.

I had to add that in Italy I've seen many cases of pretended ex-clients, ex-prostitutes, policemen or NGO people posting on prostitution forums, talking about terrible and often incredible stories of trafficking: in every case I saw, it needed just asking them three or four well expressed questions to uncover their moralistic lies (obvioulsly they weren't ex-clients nor prostitutes nor policemen, they really know almost nothing about prostitution market ...).
It comes me to mind when reading posts from clients in hookers.nl, you reported in your previous message, for example 'Apparently, most of the girls in the Achterdam are working for pimps. That is ALL money going to the pimp, not just a"tax"'. Maybe that's the truth, but I NEVER heard of a true story where ALL the money goes to pimp, let's alone if we talk about the MOST PART of girls in legal brothels!
So, my friendly advice is: beware of those kind of tales, moralistic people and radical-feminists lies everyday, they aren't at all interested in truth, just to move you away from "sin" or "women's oppression" ...


According to the law, deceiving somebody into prostitution is human trafficking too.

I was talking about "being in love" with someone. And being in love with someone very often means "being deceived" in some way!
This has nothing to do with prostitution in itself and frankly I don't think the law should be read in that way. If so, it would means that no VOLUNTEER prostitute could VOLUNTARILY give money to her man without making him a pimp!

If those cases enter into THB Dutch statistics you quoted, I'm starting to understand why it seems THB is spreading into Dutch brothels and why in the end there are so few legal actions (at the most: administrative ones) against window brothel owners "aware of trafficking"!
What would be the indictment? Just being aware that a prostitute has a parasitic boy-friend and voluntarily gives money to him?
I think this point really NEEDS to be clarified.

But your right. I am a prude. During my life (I’m almost thirty), I only have had sex with the three prostitutes I have visited as a John. For me it’s really special.

Maybe your "personal statistics" are still quite limited. I visited a good number of prostitutes, both in Italy and abroad (Germany, Netherlands, Spain ...), and found that reality of prostitution market seems to be much better than the usual horror stories about trafficking tell us. This is true even in unregulated italian street prostitution market!
Of course, it's very difficult to discover trafficked people, but when you have visited 100 or more prostitutes and so many of them, after sex, spontaneously talk with you about their life, their job, their plans, their hopes for the future, it becomes hard to believe to such generalizing horror stories (I want to emphasize: I'm against those generalization, I know trafficking do exists).

And the Swedish situation? There are 2.500 prostitutes compared to a population of 9 million. In the Netherlands we have 25.000 prostitutes compared to a population of 16 million. The scale in the Netherlands is more than 5 times higher. I think the Swedish prostitutes are doing fine. The police are not bothering them (the prostitutes themselves are not committing are crime), and pimps are rare is Sweden. I think it’s cultural.

I've examined the Swedish case and it seems to me there's no statistics to support your claim about pimps rareness in Sweden. Maybe it's true, maybe not.
The fact is that Swedish law sweeped prostitution under the carpet and nobody really knows what's happening now.
But there are some signs that life for Swedish prostitutes has become harder after client's criminalization. Maybe there aren't more pimps than before 1999, but I would be surprised if they had decreased. After all, I don't think that traffickers from Eastern Europe or Africa could be influenced by Swedish "culture" ...

Moreover, almost surely the whole prostitution market in Sweden hasn't decreased since buyers' criminalization, despite Swedish government claims.
Not only that's the opinion of many observers, supported by numbers even in the streetwalkers market, but in my site I made an estimate of Swedish market at present, based of the number of Swedish prostitutes ads on internet compared to other countries like Denmark or Italy: it seems that Swedish market could have reached now about 5000 prostitutes, from the estimated figure of 2500 in 1999! In the most optimistic view, criminalization didn't decrease at all prostitution in Sweden, just hided it.

You are right: Swedish prostitution is small, as it ever was. And it seems probable that Sweden is mainly just a transit country for traffickers, as it ever was.
Thats' a lucky situation for Sweden, otherwise the 1999 criminalizing law would have caused terrible troubles.
No surprise to me that no country with a big prostitution market has followed Sweden on that path.
The recent failure in convincing even the small and culturally influenced Finland marks even more clearly the flop of that law.


I’m very curious about what would happen if prostitution becomes legal in Sweden. I believe Sweden is actually the perfect country to legalize prostitution because pimps are so rare. I wished the situation in the Netherlands was like in Sweden.

I hope you are referring to rareness of pimps, not to clients' criminalization ... :-)


+ of I forgot, I haven't finished my story. Probably in 2007 Bulgaria and Rumania will join the EU. And simultaneously all restrictions against Eastern European workers will be lifted. Many victims of human trafficking in the Netherlands come from Bulgaria and Rumania. In 2007 there will be an ideal situation for prostitutes from these countries. They can now work fully legal in the Netherlands. I hope finally these women can break free from their pimps.

Yes, I think those are much needed steps in the right direction: stay permits for prostitution job. To be really effective, it should be done even for non-EU prostitutes. Without that, it's a heaven for pimps (here in Italy we know that situation very well).

At present, it seems to me that Dutch brothel legalization is probably discovering existing badness, not creating new trafficking.
I'll be really worried only if, some years to come and after having lifted restrictions against foreigners (that's the only major flaw in the law I see now), we'll find no significant decrease of THB in Dutch legal market.

Donkey said...

This has nothing to do with prostitution in itself and frankly I don't think the law should be read in that way.
Beware!!! Look at the http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels3.pdf (third report), page 117, table 6.15. Many Dutch victims of trafficking are subjected to violence. Most are. Funny thing is that they are a lot more subjected to violence than foreign victims of trafficking.

I have only one problem. When somebody is subjected to violence, and she is wearing her bathing suit or lingerie, it seems very likely to me that you’ll see black spots. I’ve made some walks through the RLD in Amsterdam, and those prostitutes look very healthy to me!!! Perhaps they are hiding it through make-up. I know that injection drug users hide their scars this way.

What would be the indictment? Just being aware that a prostitute has a parasitic boy-friend and voluntarily gives money to him?
I think this point really NEEDS to be clarified.

Yes, that’s true. You’ll hear for instance a lot about the Stockholm syndrome. There are stories of victims of trafficking who at some point - despite the fact that they were initially beaten and raped by their pimps – return voluntarily to their pimps after they have been rescued. Sometimes the women even fall in love with their pimp. But I think it would be best if the brothel owner refuses to let these women work in their brothels. When human traffickers don’t make money, they will stopping doing it.

I doubt there are so many cases like that ... Even here in Italy there is almost unanimous agreement (even from Catholich Church ...) that italian prostitutes working at home are practically free from coercion.
That would be great!!! Then at least the clients know that Italian prostitutes are not trafficked. By the way, there are many “Italian” prostitutes in the Netherlands!!!(-smile-)

but in my site I made an estimate of Swedish market at present, based of the number of Swedish prostitutes ads on internet compared to other countries like Denmark or Italy: it seems that Swedish market could have reached now about 5000 prostitutes, from the estimated figure of 2500 in 1999!
Hey, that’s interesting, how did you do that??!!! I like numbers.

Yes, I think those are much needed steps in the right direction: stay permits for prostitution job. To be really effective, it should be done even for non-EU prostitutes.
That’s interesting too. While I’m thinking about it, there are a lot of Thai and Latin American prostitutes in the Netherlands, many of them are non-EU, and many must be illegal. However, they rarely show up in the statistics as victims of human trafficking. That’s why I’m wondering if the relationship between illegal immigration and human trafficking is that strong.

Moreover, almost surely the whole prostitution market in Sweden hasn't decreased since buyers' criminalization, despite Swedish government claims.
For the radical feminists this doesn’t really matter. They see prostitution as “intrinsically” degrading. In their eyes legalizing prostitution makes no sense, the same way as legalizing “wife battering” makes no sense.

Maybe your "personal statistics" are still quite limited. I visited a good number of prostitutes, both in Italy and abroad (Germany, Netherlands, Spain ...), and found that reality of prostitution market seems to be much better than the usual horror stories about trafficking tell us.
That’s interesting. Have you seen the TAMPEP-reports? (I placed them on the wikipedia page about prostitution in the Netherlands). It strikes me that many prostitutes in Italy are from Nigeria and Albania. What I know from the Netherlands and Belgium is that many women of those countries are trafficked (but most do know that they will be working as prostitutes). Can you tell me a bit more about these prostitutes? In the Netherlands and Belgium they are relatively rare.

Jonathan said...

Beware!!! Look at the http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels3.pdf (third report), page 117, table 6.15. Many Dutch victims of trafficking are subjected to violence. Most are. Funny thing is that they are a lot more subjected to violence than foreign victims of trafficking.

You're right, but I weren't talking specifically about Dutch prostitutes "falling in love" with pimps, I was talking about prostitutes from every country.
I think that the report's hypothesys about higher rate of violence against Dutch prostitutes is a reasonable one: "with cross-border THB there are more opportunities available for non-violent means of coercion against victims than with domestic THB" (page 117).

By the way, I'd like to know how many of these Dutch prostitutes are really born in the Netherlands and how many have just the Dutch passport after bogus marriage with pimps.

I have only one problem. When somebody is subjected to violence, and she is wearing her bathing suit or lingerie, it seems very likely to me that you’ll see black spots. I’ve made some walks through the RLD in Amsterdam, and those prostitutes look very healthy to me!!! Perhaps they are hiding it through make-up. I know that injection drug users hide their scars this way.

I've never seen a single prostitute with any sign of violence, in Amsterdam's RLD, in Italy or elsewhere.
I do know that trafficked prostitutes are often beaten. A friend of mine tried to help a russian girl in Italy, she has been hit by his bastard trafficker and he told me of scaring livid spots on her body.
I think those cases aren't as much frequent as it's often said.


You’ll hear for instance a lot about the Stockholm syndrome. There are stories of victims of trafficking who at some point - despite the fact that they were initially beaten and raped by their pimps return voluntarily to their pimps after they have been rescued. Sometimes the women even fall in love with their pimp.

Maybe that's was the case of my friend's trafficked russian girl: despite he really helped her and gave her the opportunity to quit prostitution, she returned to the violent pimp.
There's no doubt in my mind that such a criminal deserves many years of jail, but even in such a sad case, if the "loving" girl is adult and make the volunteer choice of prostituting herself, I firmly assert that there is no coercion. Asserting the opposite, in my opinion, violates the fundamental human right to make a free choice, even a fully wrong one.
Is the same situation of many wifes beated by their husbands, making the free choice to stay with those violent men. We can't mix this with kidnapping (and, AFAIK, no law does that), as much as we can't mix prostitutes "loving" deception with coercion and trafficking.


But I think it would be best if the brothel owner refuses to let these women work in their brothels. When human traffickers don’t make money, they will stopping doing it.

I think you are right if the owner is aware of some violence (in which case he should report to the Police), otherwise it should be seen as an intusion into the private life of the girl.

there are many Italian prostitutes in the Netherlands!!!

Really? I don't remember I've met italian prostitutes in Amsterdam (I know there is a certain number working in Germany).

- but in my site I made an estimate of Swedish market at present, based of the number of Swedish prostitutes ads on internet compared to other countries like Denmark or Italy: it seems that Swedish market could have reached now about 5000 prostitutes, from the estimated figure of 2500 in 1999! -

Hey, that’s interesting, how did you do that??!!! I like numbers.


I reported that in my site (http://jonathanx.altervista.org/estero/duello10.html). It isn't at all a "scientific" estimate, but I've learned that often figures from official sources aren't much more "scientific" than that! ;-)
I used two independent sources of data:
- comparison of the number of Swedish and Danish prostitutes' ads in a well known site for Scandinavian and Baltic market (http://www.sihteeriopisto.net)
- comparison of the number of Swedish prostitutes' ads (from a figure reported in a mystifier document of a Swedish radical-feminist minister) and Italian ones (from a recent italian research, that is in very good agreement with the number you can count in the largest italian escort site, http://www.escortforum.com).

In both cases, considering the total estimate figure of prostitutes in Danemark or Italy, it results a projected figure of about 5000 prostitutes in Sweden now.
Considering that clients' criminalization could have likely induced Swedish prostitutes to a wider use of internet (but, remember: the market more affected from the law, street prostitution, has ever been a minority part of Swedish market and streetwalkers are usually the poorest and technologically retarded), I'm not saying that 5000 is certainly the correct figure.
I'm just saying that there is a lot of reasons to believe that, AT LEAST, the number of prostitutes in Sweden HASN'T DIMINISHED AT ALL since 1999.
That's exactly the opposite of what Swedish radical-feminist government says.


- Yes, I think those are much needed steps in the right direction: stay permits for prostitution job. To be really effective, it should be done even for non-EU prostitutes. -

That’s interesting too. While I’m thinking about it, there are a lot of Thai and Latin American prostitutes in the Netherlands, many of them are non-EU, and many must be illegal. However, they rarely show up in the statistics as victims of human trafficking. That’s why I’m wondering if the relationship between illegal immigration and human trafficking is that strong.


Thats' a point that surely deserves a close examination. I'm quite confident that the most part of trafficking happens into the "secret", illegal and hidden market, hence the (paradoxical) relative lack of cases about some categories (illegal immigrants) that likely are the most trafficked. If it's true, we have to look at the statistics with a lot of care!
Look at the distribution of victims (http://www.victimology.nl/onlpub/national/NL-NRMEngels3.pdf, pag. 112): do you think it's reasonable that the least legalized and least verifiable markets (escort and, yes!, street prostitution!) are also the least trafficked?
I'm ready to bet this is not the case: they are simply too "hidden" and more difficult to check.

Have you seen the TAMPEP-reports? (I placed them on the wikipedia page about prostitution in the Netherlands). It strikes me that many prostitutes in Italy are from Nigeria and Albania. What I know from the Netherlands and Belgium is that many women of those countries are trafficked (but most do know that they will be working as prostitutes). Can you tell me a bit more about these prostitutes? In the Netherlands and Belgium they are relatively rare.

Albanians and Nigerians were probably the most massive "waves" of foreign prostitutes we had in Italy at the beginning of the Nineties.
And, unfortunately, they were the most trafficked ones.

Albanians traffickers, in particular, has ever been the most brutal ones and I'm very worried reading in Dutch reports that the number of traffickers from Albania is rising in the Netherlands! ("In 2002, the number of [THB] suspects with the Albanian and Bulgarian nationality increased
markedly, both in absolute and relative terms", Third Report, pag. 107).
I've read in an Italian report that Albanian mafia is well organized in Belgium: that's a really bad thing.
Here in Italy, Albanian prostitutes decreased markedly on the streets in the last years (being often substituted by Romanians, Russians, Bulgarians,...) and this was a good thing about the issues of exploitation and violence (although Romanian pimps are often discovered, they usually are not as much violent as Albanians traffickers used to be).
Francesco Carchedi, a reputed italian researcher, even says that the decrease in the number of Albanian girls depends on the extreme violence of Albanian-ruled THB, leading almost to an auto-extinction of the phenomenon!

Nigerian girls are a slightly different case: the exploited ones are usually coerced with voodoo threats, rather than wit violence.
Moreover, whereas forced albanians could stay in slavery "forever", Nigerian girls usually had to pay a "debt", after that they often join the THB organization.
Some sources says that the number of Nigerian prostitutes in Italy has also decreased in the last years, other states it remained the same. In any case, there is a lot of Nigerian girls on italian street prostitution market.


By the way, I think your blog is a very interesting and honest site.
This doesn't mean I agree with all of your opinions and particularly with some conclusions draw from statistics, but obviously that's not the point. :-)

So, I'd like to mention it on the Forum of my site, in the Netherlands section ("Olanda"), because I'm sure others people in Italy could be interested in it.
But I'd like to have your approval to do that.

However, don't expect a marked rise in contacts, even my Forum isn't really much attended! ;-)

Donkey said...

But I'd like to have your approval to do that.
That’s okay. (why haven’t you done your forum in English?)

By the way, I'd like to know how many of these Dutch prostitutes are really born in the Netherlands and how many have just the Dutch passport after bogus marriage with pimps.

The national rapport is a bit vague on that, but what I know from the Foundation against trafficking in women is that most Dutch victims of trafficking are indeed Dutch, and most are born in the Netherlands (their parents could be immigrants)

I've never seen a single prostitute with any sign of violence, in Amsterdam's RLD, in Italy or elsewhere.

It is very strange indeed. I have no straightforward solution for that problem. The only answer I can think of is thick layers of make-up.

Yet, I’m very sure that many prostitutes in the RLD of Amsterdam are trafficked. The Christian aid organization “het Scharlaken Koord” actually made an assessment in 2002. They counted 892 prostitutes on de Wallen of whom 450 women handed over all their earnings to their pimp. That’s more than 50%. Even Mariska Majoor (Wallenwinkel, PIC, prostitution information centre) admits that there are lots of traffickers on de Wallen. She gives a lower estimate: approximately 20%.

The Beursstraat policestation even has a portfolio with the heads and names of 76 violent pimps. Many foreign pimps are not included. Daily there are an estimated 20 to 50 pimps on de Wallen with the Dutch nationality, foreign pimps and female pimps not included (most human traffickers come from abroad and a quarter is female).

I think you are right if the owner is aware of some violence (in which case he should report to the Police), otherwise it should be seen as an intusion into the private life of the girl.

That’s a big problem indeed. I think it’s very logical that with every new girl the brothel owner asks her some questions. But asking the woman about her private life is indeed a violation. That means that the victims of “feigned love” cannot be removed from legal brothels.

I’m very pessimistic. If it’s true, then I believe prostitution can never be properly regulated. We can never stop "voluntary" human trafficking.

Regulating prostitution is for other reasons also very problematic. The brothel owner can never order the prostitute to do things, because that would violate the prostitute’s physical integrity. Working contracts are therefore impossible. The prostitute can only be an independent contractor. That’s how the brothel owners label them (it also has the benefit that they don’t need to pay social security contributions). But in reality there definitely is a situation of authority over the prostitute. The tax department also sees it that way (rightly so) and a couple of weeks ago the tax department sent a tax assessment to 600 brothels in the Netherlands!!! The fear is that many brothels will go bankrupt. And 20% of the brothels in Amsterdam will have to close because recently criminal ownership has been proven.

Really? I don't remember I've met italian prostitutes in Amsterdam (I know there is a certain number working in Germany).

About 1% of the prostitutes in the Netherlands call themselves “Italian”. They probably are Eastern European prostitutes who hide their identities.

It isn't at all a "scientific" estimate, but I've learned that often figures from official sources aren't much more "scientific" than that!

I have made an attempt myself to estimate the number of prostitutes in the Netherlands. It was a disillusionment. I have looked at all the brothel-websites I can think of and some 68 of them reveal the number of prostitutes in their brothel. Using that information I estimate that there are (with a 95% likelihood) 6400 and 9500 women in those brothels (windows not included). And there are between 2900 and 4500 women working as escorts. The error margins are huge. In total there are between 9300 and 14000 women working in brothels and as escorts. I haven’t found ways to estimate the number of women in window prostitution or other forms of prostitution. Notice that the upper limit is 50% higher than the lower limit. (I like numbers) That means it’s very difficult to assess the number of prostitutes as a whole!!! Think about how difficult it is to calculate the number of victims of human trafficking!! And we even can’t agree what a victim of human trafficking actually is!!!!

do you think it's reasonable that the least legalized and least verifiable markets (escort and, yes!, street prostitution!) are also the least trafficked?
Yes. For instance, a lot of women who work illegally in their own apartment are older Dutch women. It are usually these women who advertise on the internet. But, there’s indeed a hidden underground prostitution segment which caters primarily to isolated ethnic groups. In Amsterdam South-East (de Bijlmer) there is a large African community. In this area there are also a lot of small illegal brothels which cater to the African men who live there. There are supposedly a hundred women prostitutes who work in those brothels (many are Africans). Then there are the Turkish coffeehouses and hostess bars which cater to (you guessed) Turkish men (many prostitutes in those brothels are Bulgarian). There are a lot of these in Rotterdam. I think the number of women who work in these illegal brothels should not be overestimated. I think the best way to estimate the size of this illegal industry is to look at the number of immigrants of those countries who live in the Netherlands. There are some 300.000 Turks in the Netherlands and some 70.000 Africans. In total there are 16.000.000 people in the Netherlands. When we assume that Turkish and African men are as horny as Dutch men then we should estimate that 2 percent of the prostitutes in the Netherlands caters to Turkish men and 0,5 percent to African men. That’s a small percentage.

And…… there are lots of illegal massage parlors in the Netherlands. Most women in these illegal brothels are Thai. And…. They rarely show up as victims of human trafficking (also in the legal brothels, there are also many Thai women in legal brothels).

I’m busy again analyzing all the human trafficking stories in the media. It’s indeed funny to see that many victims work in window brothels (most are licensed). Child prostitutes often work in the home of the pimp, on the streets or in parking garages. It believe the problem of child prostitution in the Netherlands is relatively small. They rarely work in de tippelzones and the advertisements on the internet often show older women.

The Red Thread once observed that illegal prostitutes often work in legal brothels, and the legal prostitutes often work in the illegal domain!!!!! The situation could therefore be reverse; there are reasons to believe there is relatively more human trafficking in legal brothels than in illegal brothels!

Jonathan said...

(why haven’t you done your forum in English?)

My site started as (and basically is) a thought-provoking place about italian prostitution, also to challenge italian bigots and contest manifest lies of italian media, so I thought it was better not to raise linguistic barriers to my fellow countrymen.
I think I'll put into the Forum a section for English-speaking people.


I've never seen a single prostitute with any sign of violence, in Amsterdam's RLD, in Italy or elsewhere.

It is very strange indeed. I have no straightforward solution for that problem. The only answer I can think of is thick layers of make-up.


I think that no layer of makeup, no matter how much thick, could hide the spots (and the pain) when you have sex with a prostitute.
And I didn't saw any signs of it even when having sex with them.
Maybe you should have some more direct contacts with these prostitutes (no sarcasm here, just what I think is an objective consideration) to discover that.

Yet, I’m very sure that many prostitutes in the RLD of Amsterdam are trafficked. The Christian aid organization “het Scharlaken Koord” actually made an assessment in 2002. They counted 892 prostitutes on de Wallen of whom 450 women handed over all their earnings to their pimp. That’s more than 50%.

ALL their earnings, from more than 50%? That would be TOTAL slavery, carried on in a public place and under total silence.
I don't believe at all at that, except for some sad cases that surely exist.
It reminds to me the many lies from italian catholic organizations. I know their lies very well.

I'm much more interested in hearing opinions from prostitutes' organizations rather than from catholic or radical-feminist groups, except if those latter groups show reliable and objective statistics. But this is a case I've never seen.

Even Mariska Majoor (Wallenwinkel, PIC, prostitution information centre) admits that there are lots of traffickers on de Wallen. She gives a lower estimate: approximately 20%.

I think Majoor estimate is much more realistic, and probably just an upper limit (and I bet that 20% includes even the problematic case of "lover pimps"). I can't see any reason why there should be more THB in a controlled market than in the almost uncontrolled italian market.


I think it’s very logical that with every new girl the brothel owner asks her some questions. But asking the woman about her private life is indeed a violation. That means that the victims of feigned love cannot be removed from legal brothels.

Just like the case of unhappy housewifes from private houses: you can stop it just if violence or coercion is reported.
I can't see why prostitution should be seen in a a different way.

I’m very pessimistic. If it’s true, then I believe prostitution can never be properly regulated. We can never stop "voluntary" human trafficking.

I have no desire to look at "regulation" of free choices, if those are really personal choices. In history we had a long red line of crimes made relying upon that way to look at other people's lifestyle.
It's not just a prostitution related matter: it's a matter of respecting people free choices and not arrogating the right to decide for them.

The tax department also sees it that way (rightly so) and a couple of weeks ago the tax department sent a tax assessment to 600 brothels in the Netherlands!!! The fear is that many brothels will go bankrupt. And 20% of the brothels in Amsterdam will have to close because recently criminal ownership has been proven.

The closure of criminal-owned brothels would be a good thing. It would show that cleaning actions from the Police were carried on just now and things are tougher for traffickers. That's just what I would expected from Netherlands' brothels legalization.

The fact is: it seems in this case there is NO PROVE of criminal ownership
("The city has decided this on the grounds of suspicions that the owners are involved in criminal activities [...] The campaign is directed in particular against the Red Light District, which the city wants to get rid of, in order to realize their vision of transforming the city into yet another bland Euro business/tourist centre." , http://www.ignatzmice.com/Adam/news_archive.php?subaction=showfull&id=1150914900&archive=1151692322&start_from=&ucat=&).

So I'm afraid it's just the usual case of hypocritical moralism, which (being in the Netherlands) I could name "Lodewijk Asscher-style".

By the way, I know since long time that Amsterdam council isn't the smarter authority in the Netherlands in regard to prostitution policies: after all, the first failure of a badly designed tippelzone was in Amsterdam.
I'm wondering if Amsterdam major and council are going on that way ...

The tax issue is another kind of problem. I think that brothel owners should pay taxes, but I'm much more skeptical about taxing prostitutes, especially immigrants who just wants to work for some years to make as much money as they can, in the shortest time, and come back to their countries: the most probably outcome of taxing them, is to induce them into clandestinity and that's an undesirable consequence.
The case is very different for native prostitutes, at least regarding the exchange between paying taxes now and enjoying retirement when older, they could want that.


About 1% of the prostitutes in the Netherlands call themselves “Italian”. They probably are Eastern European prostitutes who hide their identities.

It's likely so. Here in Italy we have "Greek" prostitutes who aren't Greek at all!


Notice that the upper limit is 50% higher than the lower limit. (I like numbers) That means it’s very difficult to assess the number of prostitutes as a whole!!!

It's difficult for everyone, even for professional researchers. That's why I try to rely on the most reputed researchers and usually just elaborate or aggregate again those supposedly reliable figures. The estimate I made from web ads is an exception.

do you think it's reasonable that the least legalized and least verifiable markets (escort and, yes!, street prostitution!) are also the least trafficked?

Yes. For instance, a lot of women who work illegally in their own apartment are older Dutch women. It are usually these women who advertise on the internet.But, there’s indeed a hidden underground prostitution segment which caters primarily to isolated ethnic groups.
[...]
The Red Thread once observed that illegal prostitutes often work in legal brothels, and the legal prostitutes often work in the illegal domain!!!!! The situation could therefore be reverse; there are reasons to believe there is relatively more human trafficking in legal brothels than in illegal brothels!


Maybe I expressed my question in an incorrect way.
The correct one is: given 100 traffickers before brothel legalization and presuming that a quote of them shifted from brothels and windows to hidden market whereas another tried to stay in the visible market, do you really think that the latters (staying exposed) were the majority (> 50) and just a few went underground?
My answer is a sounding : NO. I dont' believe that.

I don't believe the most of traffickers weren't induced to hide themselves and their victims, when inspections started.
This happened even in Italy when "street cleaning" police actions started (and in Italy there aren't fixed checking points like brothels!), it probably happened in Sweden too.
That doesn't mean that market outside brothels and windows (apartment, escorts ...) is largely trafficked, just that it likely contains more trafficking than brothel market (but, luckily, with a larger quote of independent and volunteer sex workers).
I know that apartment prostitution is often free from trafficking, because autochtonous and independent women usually work in their own apartment.
But in Italy, for example, it's virtually impossible to find child prostitutes in the street market: the "dirty things" are usually carried on in a hidden way and that should be no surprise for anyone.

Moreover, I looked more carefully at statistics you pointed out earlier, particularly from the more recent fourth report, and it seems to me there are encouraging signs I've overlooked, reading them too superficially.

Look at investigations involving sex establishments proprietors (Table 3.8):
2002: 127
2003: 41
A 75% decrease!

And, even more important, look at sex establishments proprietors GUILTLY involved in THB (i.e.: aware of THB or traffickers themselves):
2002: 78
2003: 23
A marked decrease, again.

Moreover, "trafficker proprietors" rose from 3 to 14 but the "guiltly aware" number fell from 75 to 9!
It seems that much less proprietors in 2003 feigned ignorance about THB.

Again, amongst 22 proprietors arrested in 2003 (I suppose the remaining 23rd succeeded in running away ...), JUST SIX were from legal brothels!
"Among the suspects arrested in 2003, 22 were proprietors of sex establishments: of these, 6 ran licensed sex establishments,"

So, it seems NOT TRUE that trafficking appears so much prominent into the legal market, even if it's the easier market to check and punish!

And the previously cited case of "just 4 prosecuted" is really referred to "4 out of these 6, ALSO administratively prosecuted", not to the total number!
"In 2003, 5 of the 6 suspected proprietors (of licensed establishments) were reported to the municipality, in one case this still had
to be done. In so far as known to the police, (also) administrative proceedings have been initiated against 4 of these proprietors."


In fact, I was very perplexed about the news of Dutch Police and Justice prosecuting just 20% of arrested guys (and reporting that absurdity into an official report!).

Now it's clear to me that's not the case: the guilty proprietors were ALL arrested, both from legal and illegal markets, and almost all of those coming from legal market already had been ALSO administratively prosecuted.

Why there were "just" 4 administrative procedure?
It's quite obvious: you start (ALSO) an administrative process just in those cases where there is a violation of a LICENSE or an AUTHORIZATION, and this is the case ONLY when LEGAL brothels are involved (just six cases)!

The remaining 22 - 6 = 16 illegal sex establishment proprietors were arrested and prosecuted just for criminal charges, whereas the "legal" proprietors were arrested and prosecuted for BOTH criminal and administrative charges.

So, it's NOT TRUE that often "brothel owners get away with it".
They won't be prosecuted only if it's recognized they weren't aware of trafficking into their establishments. But that's correct, because it would be unjustifiable to punish even those UNAWARE 18 proprietors!

Saying it even more explicitely: even if I agree about the importance of watching THB in prostitution very carefully, after a more careful examination of statistics I had to say that in my opinion THOSE STATISTICS DON'T SUPPORT AT ALL the idea that Dutch legal market is largely oppressed by trafficking.

And it's now quite clear to me why the National Rapporteur doesn't seem as much worried about those figures as you are!

Not only the enquirers has the means to understand if a rise in THB figures is due to an increase in THB or just to the increase of investigations (that seems to be their judgement about provisional figures for 2004), they also can look at figures that, on the whole, aren't so worrying.

Even the highest 400 figure for POSSIBLE victims in 2004 is less than 2% of the total estimated prostitutes population in the Netherlands.
It has to be remembered that in Italy, which has an estimated number of foreign prostitutes similar to the number for the Netherlands (about 25.000), every year there are several thousands of prostitutes contacted for possible THB, and several hundreds entering "protection" programs (although it's quite clear the a large part of them aren't really forced: they just take advantage of an italian law that gives stay permits to THB "victims" even if they don't report the traffickers to the Police).
Both looking at that in absolute view and comparing to other countries, it doesn't seems to me the Dutch market is out of control, not at all.

I think you should look at those figures much more carefully.

Donkey said...

and I bet that 20% includes even the problematic case of "lover pimps").

Beware, we are talking about window prostitution. Human traffickers have a preference for window prostitution. Let’s say that they put 33% behind a window while of all prostitutes 20% works behind a window. The trafficking percentage in window prostitution is likely higher than in other sectors.

It's not just a prostitution related matter: it's a matter of respecting people free choices and not arrogating the right to decide for them.
No, I don’t agree. Surely, a woman has the right to be beaten by her husband. But the husband doesn’t have the right to beat his wife. The woman has the right to be forced into prostitution by her husband. But the husband doesn’t have the right to do that to his wife. And surely the woman has the right to be forced to have sex with many clients. But the clients don’t have the right to have sex with a person who is forced. Forced sex is forced sex is rape is a crime.

do you really think that the latters (staying exposed) were the majority (> 50) and just a few went underground?
The human traffickers don’t have to be afraid. Look at this article: http://juridischdagblad.nl/content/view/913/1/
The police checked 154 prostitutes in Amsterdam on February 2005. They checked 55 window brothels and 12 clubs. Okay, here it comes, of those 154 prostitutes… 2 (????) had a false passport, 3 didn’t have working permit and of 1 prostitute (??!!!!!!!) they “suspected” she was forced into prostitution. ONE VICTIM PER 154 PROSTITUTES??!!! And this despite all the bad reports and all the bad stories. I think you don’t even believe that.

the guilty proprietors were ALL arrested, both from legal and illegal markets, and almost all of those coming from legal market already had been ALSO administratively prosecuted.
Yes, only the ones who were found guilty. But not the proprietors who where “aware” but didn’t interfere. The owners of window brothels are never involved in human trafficking, they only let windows (and check documents etc…). But this is a bad sign to me. When you know there are so many pimps around, you should also look which girl belongs to which pimp. And if you read the article by Ruth Hopkins then you’ll see that the proprietors on de Wallen are VERY AWARE what’s going on. (see: http://fleshtrade.blogspot.com/2005/10/slave-trade-on-de-wallen.html) And the proprietors who are not aware SHOULD HAVE BEEN aware, they just have to watch out.

Look at investigations involving sex establishments proprietors (Table 3.8):
2002: 127
2003: 41
A 75% decrease!


All the numbers fluctuate heavily. Look at the number of reports made by victims per year:
1997: 27
1998: 98
1999: 69
2000: 91
2001: 186
2002: 258
2003: 155

It’s very difficult to draw conclusions from these fluctuating numbers. The number of reports made by victims in 2003 is drastically lower than in 2002, but higher than in 2000 and 1998. The number of cases in 2003 have decreased. And what’s funny is that the number of sectors involved per case has decreased too!! There’s less overlap. Also the number of sex establishments involved PER CASE has decreased significantly. And also the number of reports per case.

Look:
2000:25 cases, overlap of sectors 128%
2001:48 cases, overlap of sectors 140%
2002:55 cases, overlap of sectors=146%,140 sex establishments involved (2,55 per case), 258 reports made by victims (4,7 reports per case)
2003:42 cases, overlap of sectors=109%,54 sex establishments involved (1,29 per case), 130 reports made by victims (3,0 reports per case)

Does it mean that because there are less sex establishments involved compared to 2002 that human trafficking in sex establishments has decreased? I don’t have a clue. It could also be true that the police is putting less effort in human trafficking investigations. That could also explain why there are less reports made by victims. It’s difficult to say.

And it's now quite clear to me why the National Rapporteur doesn't seem as much worried about those figures as you are!

Why I have so much faith in for instance table 3.11 is that it is strikingly similar to a media investigation I did (I'm expanding it at this moment).
My provisional results (I sampled 67 prostitutes):
Of 59 victims there was information about the sectors where they worked:
39% (also) worked behind a window
44% (also) worked in a club
12% (also) worked as an escort
19% (also) worked on the street
7% (also) worked in an apartment (usually of the pimp)

Granted, many cases are prior to legalization. Now the number of which I believe are after legalization (October 2000), the dates are not that clear however (usually the article or book doesn’t say when the crime has happened):
38 victims
Window: 32%
Club: 42%
Escort: 8%
Street: 24%
Apartment: 8%

The numbers are very similar to those in table 3.11. But they are outdated (now it’s 2006), and the latest number are from 2003. I’m still waiting for the numbers for 2004 and 2005. There are dangers on the horizon however. The National Rapporteur has indicated that from now on she will not put much effort in police reports. Big chance that the statistics which I find so very interesting (like table 3.11) will not be there in the next report. What’s also dangerous is that the Foundation Against Women Trafficking will also take into account exploitation in other sectors than prostitution. That’s a great thing but what’s annoying is that they sweep all the victims into one heap. That means that you can’t compare the statistics anymore with those of previous years. I fear that the National Rapporteur will do the same.

foreign prostitutes similar to the number for the Netherlands (about 25.000)

You’re wrong. 33% of the prostitutes (in 1998/1999) is Dutch. And at this moment I believe the percentage is higher.

Both looking at that in absolute view and comparing to other countries, it doesn't seems to me the Dutch market is out of control, not at all. I think you should look at those figures much more carefully.
It depends on which numbers you WANT to believe. It’s very difficult. Personally I believe the numbers of the Scharlaken Koord are not that bad. They say that 87% of the Dutch window prostitutes are introduced into prostitution by pimps. The criminologist Frank Bovenkerk confirmed that (6 out of 7 they interviewed). And a police officer in the window-streets of Arnhem says the same thing, most are introduced into prostitution by pimps. Even Metje Blaak of the Red Thread estimates that OVERALL (including also other sectors than window prostitution) 30% of the Dutch prostitutes is put into prostitution by a pimp.

they also can look at figures that, on the whole, aren't so worrying.
The stories are worrying. For instance, Frank Bovenkerk noticed that when Toos Heemskerk (Scharlaken Koord) went by the windows of Eastern European prostitutes, every time a cell phone rang to push the prostitutes to start working again. Probably the pimps where in cafés on the opposite side of the street. (see: http://fleshtrade.blogspot.com/2006/02/loverboys-and-modern-pimps.html)

Jonathan said...

It's not just a prostitution related matter: it's a matter of respecting people free choices and not arrogating the right to decide for them.

No, I don’t agree. Surely, a woman has the right to be beaten by her husband.


She has the right to choose.

But the husband doesn’t have the right to beat his wife.

Right, he should be jailed.

The woman has the right to be forced into prostitution by her husband. But the husband doesn’t have the right to do that to his wife. And surely the woman has the right to be forced to have sex with many clients. But the clients don’t have the right to have sex with a person who is forced. Forced sex is forced sex is rape is a crime.

Of course, if the client is aware of that.
If not, is the same thing as the not awareness of some brothel owners.

It's not a strange thing nor does it means being permissive.
It's called justice, law and rights.


The human traffickers don’t have to be afraid. Look at this article: http://juridischdagblad.nl/content/view/913/1/
The police checked 154 prostitutes in Amsterdam on February 2005. They checked 55 window brothels and 12 clubs. Okay, here it comes, of those 154 prostitutes 2 (????) had a false passport, 3 didn’t have working permit and of 1 prostitute (??!!!!!!!) they suspected she was forced into prostitution. ONE VICTIM PER 154 PROSTITUTES??!!! And this despite all the bad reports and all the bad stories. I think you don’t even believe that.


Yes, probably that number is too much optimistic. But you don't have to believe just to pessimistic figures. The truth probably lies beetwen them.

the guilty proprietors were ALL arrested, both from legal and illegal markets, and almost all of those coming from legal market already had been ALSO administratively prosecuted.

Yes, only the ones who were found guilty. But not the proprietors who where aware but didn’t interfere.


Not at all, according the fourth report!
In 2003 there were 9 aware + 14 traffickers = 23 guilty brothel proprietors. There were 22 arrested, I can guess who (one escaped, probably).

And if you read the article by Ruth Hopkins then you’ll see that the proprietors on de Wallen are VERY AWARE what’s going on. (see: http://fleshtrade.blogspot.com/2005/10/slave-trade-on-de-wallen.html)

May be I missed it, but it seems to me that article's translation doesn't mention proprietors or windows' owners.



It’s very difficult to draw conclusions from these fluctuating numbers.
[...]
Does it mean that because there are less sex establishments involved compared to 2002 that human trafficking in sex establishments has decreased? I don’t have a clue. It could also be true that the police is putting less effort in human trafficking investigations. That could also explain why there are less reports made by victims. It’s difficult to say.


As far as we know, it could be true that police efforts are cleaning that market. Looking at the reports, that seems to be the opinion of enquirers.


I’m still waiting for the numbers for 2004 and 2005. There are dangers on the horizon however. The National Rapporteur has indicated that from now on she will not put much effort in police reports. Big chance that the statistics which I find so very interesting (like table 3.11) will not be there in the next report. What’s also dangerous is that the Foundation Against Women Trafficking will also take into account exploitation in other sectors than prostitution. That’s a great thing but what’s annoying is that they sweep all the victims into one heap. That means that you can’t compare the statistics anymore with those of previous years. I fear that the National Rapporteur will do the same.

I think that melting different cases just in one total figure would be wrong.

But it seems to me that if not only the National Rapporteur but also an organization devoted to fighting traffic is doing so, it's probably another sign that things are going better about THB in prostitution!

Do you think the National Rapporteur or FAWT are both unskilled or are interested in hiding that kind of traffic?

foreign prostitutes similar to the number for the Netherlands (about 25.000)

You’re wrong. 33% of the prostitutes (in 1998/1999) is Dutch. And at this moment I believe the percentage is higher.


I meant: the foreign prostitutes in Italy (about 25.000 of the 50.000 total estimate, a quite uncertain figure anyway) are about the same number of estimated total prostitutes in the Netherlands. I excluded italian prostitutes in Italy just to exclude the likely almost not trafficked women. I purposely took the worst case for the comparison.

Both looking at that in absolute view and comparing to other countries, it doesn't seems to me the Dutch market is out of control, not at all. I think you should look at those figures much more carefully.

It depends on which numbers you WANT to believe.


I just "want" to believe to statistics made by hopefully unbiased (i.e.: not ideologically oriented) professionals on the largest possible scale.
I've learned that small-scale "researches" and anectodes ar not just useless, they are very often misleading.

Moreover, I've learned that every liar involved in this issue usually has a small-scale statistic (i.e.: anecdotes) to show to the public: using single cases to assert they represent the whole is a usual tactic.

It’s very difficult. Personally I believe the numbers of the Scharlaken Koord are not that bad. They say that 87% of the Dutch window prostitutes are introduced into prostitution by pimps. The criminologist Frank Bovenkerk confirmed that (6 out of 7 they interviewed).

Are you saying he made a statistics based on just SEVEN interviews? :-O
I said: no anecdotes, please ...

And a police officer in the window-streets of Arnhem says the same thing, most are introduced into prostitution by pimps. Even Metje Blaak of the Red Thread estimates that OVERALL (including also other sectors than window prostitution) 30% of the Dutch prostitutes is put into prostitution by a pimp.

It's the same old story: were they forced (i.e.: COULD THEY STOP IMMEDIATLY, IF THEY WANT, OR NOT?) or were they induced to have an agreement with those pimps because they need "logistic" support (it's the case of the vast majority of foreign prostitutes in Italy, but just a minority is considered forced).
In the latter case there's just one solution: grant stay permits to foreign prostitutes. I don't know any other realistic way to face that problem.

they also can look at figures that, on the whole, aren't so worrying.

The stories are worrying. For instance, Frank Bovenkerk noticed that when Toos Heemskerk (Scharlaken Koord) went by the windows of Eastern European prostitutes, every time a cell phone rang to push the prostitutes to start working again. Probably the pimps where in cafés on the opposite side of the street. (see: http://fleshtrade.blogspot.com/2006/02/loverboys-and-modern-pimps.html)


Bovenverk (anecdotes apart) give a rough estimate of about one hundred pimps counted ON A WHOLE YEAR. It would be a very bad way to use that figure if one would use that number to estimate the rate of girls with pimps: we need a "snapshot", not a "sum" over a whole year.
According to Bovenverk, during a weekend there are probably fifty. That's 10% of total estimated number of windows in Amsterdam (http://www.ignatzmice.com/Adam/features/Printer%20Friendly/window_count_PF.htm).
This means that the rate of windows girls with pimp is about 10%, probably somewhat more. It's a rate higher than I could hope but not so high to be overly alarming (it's about the same as the lowest estimate for Italy).
And, obviously, that's ENORMOUSLY less than the 87% given by "the Scharlaken Koord" ...

I'm much more alarmed of hearing that "there are many ALBANIANS among the Eastern European supervisors".
I'm worried by them, not by real "loverboys" pimps (I suppose the two categories don't overlap entirely).

Donkey said...

Haha!! We’ll never be friends. But I guarantee you, I believe there’s nothing wrong with consensual sex between two adults. It’s only so difficult to determine for a client if a prostitute is REALLY a consenting adult. Especially when there’s so little known about human trafficking and even prostitution in general.

I like this discussion, it keeps me mentally fit. For instance, I’ve never wondered about the bruises before. How come so few (if any) prostitutes have visible bruises, while violence against victims of trafficking is so endemic? I have a theory; perhaps they are not beaten regularly, but only in the beginning. It typically takes three weeks for bruises to disappear. It’s an interesting question. Another solution is….. camouflage cosmetics:
http://www.plasticsurgery.org/public_education/procedures/CamouflageCosmetics.cfm

Of course, if the client is aware of that. If not, is the same thing as the not awareness of some brothel owners.
No, I don’t agree. For instance, if the Scharlaken Koord is right and 50% of the prostitutes in the RLD of Amsterdam indeed hands over all their earnings to their pimps, than the chance of encountering such a prostitute on de Wallen is very big indeed!!! Visit 10 prostitutes on de Wallen, and you can expect to meet 5 (practically-)enslaved prostitutes. That’s why I’m so busy analyzing all the data and statistics to find out if there’s a way for clients to separate the forced from the voluntary prostitutes! I would be all too happy if human trafficking is indeed just another neo-Victorian myth. I really do, but until I find out, I have to be very careful.

If not, is the same thing as the not awareness of some brothel owners.
One of the conclusion of Bovenkerk was that proprietors didn’t do anything to stop pimped women from working in their brothels, while often they indeed do know what’s going on. That’s what the prostitutes they interviewed and a doorkeeper told them.

May be I missed it, but it seems to me that article's translation doesn't mention proprietors or windows' owners.

Okay, it’s this part:

‘Mehmet, the fat one, is one of the errand boys of the Turkish group. He transports the women and arranges everything for them’, says Manuela, a window-landlady. She ‘maintains the compartments’, cleans them, collects the rent and knows everybody who lives and works on de Wallen. ‘Men are not allowed to rent a window for a woman, they have to do that themselves. They hope to distract pimps that way.’ She looks cynically. ‘But the pimps run the show here. Mehmet once came with another man and a Bulgarian girl. She took her bags with her belongings with her behind the window, as if she had just arrived here. That was strange. I saw she didn’t want to work her. All night long the men stood before her window, checking if she had enough customers. In the morning she was forced to join them again.’


This article is not complete. It’s a short version of a chapter from her book. In the same chapter “Manuela” is summoned by her superiors to stop talking to the journalist because it’s “bad for business”. Another landlord hinted that they were not allowed to do business with pimps….. but business is slack since legalization.

In 2003 there were 9 aware + 14 traffickers = 23 guilty brothel proprietors. There were 22 arrested, I can guess who (one escaped, probably).
Heyyyy, you’re right indeed!!! But….. “Against 3 proprietors this has led - also in so far as known do the police - to administrative sanctions.” Their brothels are still there.

Looking at the reports, that seems to be the opinion of enquirers.
Yes, it’s their “opinion”. But the same type of enquirers believe that because the police rarely “finds” victims of trafficking of legal brothels, that there’s REALLY hardly any human trafficking in legal brothels, …. And therefore it has moved underground. It’s stupid. Actually it’s quite impossible to determine if human trafficking has shifted from legal to illegal brothels. Estimates of the numbers of trafficking victims range from a 1000 to 7000 on a yearly basis. With such a big error margin you can never actually measure such a shift.

But anyway (look at the fourth report). The National Rapporteur has a different opinion, look:

There are matters of concern too, though, such as the reduction in subsidies for public organisations
in the policy areas of prostitution and (combating) THB, the fall in the number of successfully
completed investigations into THB in 2003, and also the decline in the number of suspects
arrested and ‘referred’ in each investigation. In addition, the National Police Project on Prostitution
and Trafficking in Human Beings (Projectgroep Prostitutie Mensenhandel/de Nederlandse
Politie - PPM/dNP) did not meet for several months, and there are frequent signs that in certain
regions, partly due to capacity problems, only sporadic inspections are made of sex establishments.


I excluded italian prostitutes in Italy just to exclude the likely almost not trafficked women.
Are there that many Italian prostitutes in Italy? I didn’t know that! That’s funny because I always believed Italy has the one of the lowest percentages of domestic prostitutes. (I believe you right away!)

grant stay permits to foreign prostitutes. I don't know any other realistic way to face that problem.
I absolutely agree with that. I believe we should even legalize migration COMPLETELY!!!!

Are you saying he made a statistics based on just SEVEN interviews? :-O
Actually, they interviewed another 20 Dutch prostitutes on a different occasion. But this time they didn’t give exact numbers, they just said: indeed, MANY [of those 20] entered prostitution through a romantic relationship.

Bovenverk (anecdotes apart) give a rough estimate of about one hundred pimps counted ON A WHOLE YEAR. It would be a very bad way to use that figure if one would use that number to estimate the rate of girls with pimps: we need a "snapshot", not a "sum" over a whole year.
According to Bovenverk, during a weekend there are probably fifty. That's 10% of total estimated number of windows in Amsterdam


Yes, but they mean pimps with the Dutch nationality. The whole research focused on Dutch victims of trafficking. That’s why they’re not so interested in foreign pimps. But if you look into the “fourth” report you’ll see that 60% of the trafficking suspects is foreign. And above all, a quarter is female. If you take them into account the numbers will inflate from a hundred to over 300. But it’s better to look how many pimps there are on a daily basis to make comparisons. On a midweek-evening there are supposedly some 20 “Dutch” pimps on de Wallen who control some 20 “Dutch” women, foreign pimps and prostitutes not included. Bovenkerk estimates himself that on a daily basis there are some 400 prostitutes who work there on a day. If you simply guess how many pimps there are in total there could be some 67 pimps with at least 1 woman per pimp. That’s significant.

This means that the rate of windows girls with pimp is about 10%, probably somewhat more. It's a rate higher than I could hope but not so high to be overly alarming
That’s very alarming! For me it’s a sign to stay away from de Wallen as a customer.

And, obviously, that's ENORMOUSLY less than the 87% given by "the Scharlaken Koord" ...
Watch out!!! The number 87% refers to the percentage of Dutch window-prostitutes who have ENTERED prostitution because of a lover-pimp. Many have left their former pimp in the meantime and now work for themselves.

not by real "loverboys" pimps
They are ruining lives!!!! Isn’t it terrible for such a girl to find out that the one she loves has betrayed her??? That she has given up her “dignity” for a lie?(okay, that’s very prudish, but that’s how many people including prostitutes see it that way) For many people this must be devastating!!!

Jonathan said...

Haha!! We’ll never be friends. But I guarantee you, I believe there’s nothing wrong with consensual sex between two adults. It’s only so difficult to determine for a client if a prostitute is REALLY a consenting adult. Especially when there’s so little known about human trafficking and even prostitution in general.

At first, I prepared a point-by-point answer, just like we are doing these days.

Then I thought there were no point in going on objecting to figures or trying to convince you how much crap are Scharlaken Koord's data and how much wrong you are in giving credit to these bigots, before having clarified the "main thing".
In fact, after having gathered up your posts and articles, it's now much more clear to me what's the most important thing about this whole issue.

Let me state this, because it's THE MOST IMPORTANT THING I HAD TO SAY TO YOU.
And I do have the arrogance to say it's a really important thing.

********************************************
You'll never be able to realize what's the truth if you go on confusing the case of "having a pimp" with "being forced".

NEVER.
********************************************


Italy has a lot of deficiencies in dealing with prostitution, but at least one thing is clear: the law distinguishes between "being a pimp" and "being a slave trafficker" (with two different articles of the Penal Code).

The first case (usually called "sfruttatore" or "magnaccia" or "pappone", in italian) means "making money from prostitutes' work", the second ("schiavista" or "trafficante") means "forcing women to prostitute themselves, reducing them in slavery".

Both are criminal behaviours, severely punished: in the first case the pimp risks from 4 up till 12 years of prison (according to italian law, Dutch brothel owners are all criminals ... :-).
The latter case is more serious: the trafficker risks from 8 to 20 years.

In the vast majority of italian cases reported by news, when a pimp is arrested THERE IS JUST THE CHARGE OF "PIMPING" ("sfruttamento della prostituzione"), the charge of "trafficking" ("riduzione in schiavitù") is much more rare.
That's the reason why in Italy we are aware of this "strange" situation, I believe you had to meditate upon:
although the vast majority of immigrant prostitutes almost certainly "has a PIMP" (as far as I know, there is no research to show how many, I can guess about 80%), at the same time the rate of forced SLAVES amongst them is just between 10% and 20%.

Well, that's not strange at all: being a "loverboy" or a business-like organizer isn't the same thing that forcing someone!

When a "pimp" is arrested, very often the illegal immigrant prostitute, who was deported back to her country, RETURNS VOLUNTARILY to Italy with another "pimp".
But when a trafficker is arrested, the slave prostitute is just grateful to the Police for her rescue and certainly doesn't think to prostitute herself again!

THE TWO ARE COMPLETELY DIFFERENT CIRCUMSTANCES and the evidence is given by the opposite behaviour of women involved in them.

Our law punishes anyone who "makes money" from prostitutes work (even indirectly, when being a real lover cohabiting with the prostitute, this is a longtime complaint of italian prostitutes organizations!), calling them "pimps", but doesn't confuse them with slave traffickers!

So, you should ask yourself: when that prostitute you reported, in RLD, told you "Many girls who work here have a pimp. Yes.. a pimp!!!! A pimp, a pimp, a pimp." did she mean that many girls were FORCED or that many girls have a sort of AGREEMENT ("romantic" or business-like) with a man?

Frankly speaking, it seems to me you were misleaded (by yourself? by others?) since the beginning, confusing pimping with trafficking.

Hence your surprise, for example, for finding no sign of violence on the bodies of presumed "trafficked slaves".
Believe me, it's not a matter of "camouflage cosmetics".

You'll never have a clear picture if you aren't able to distinguish the two very different situation, the FREE CHOICE from the SLAVERY.

It's not about men's behaviour, "pimps" or "traffickers": it's about women choice (or not).

That's is the single most important thing to think about when dealing with prostitution, from that derive all the other considerations and choices.
And, in my opinion, that should be done by simple citizens and by politicians, too.

That misunderstanding is a particularly serious and unfortunate thing, because bigots and liars rely just on the deceit of using equivocally those terms: "pimp" and "trafficker".
It seems to me they are as much active in the Netherlands as they are in Italy, with similar tactics.
Maybe, fortunately for Netherlands, they are given less credit than in Italy or, at least, I hope so ...

Jonathan

Donkey said...

"Many girls who work here have a pimp. Yes.. a pimp!!!! A pimp, a pimp, a pimp." did she mean that many girls were FORCED or that many girls have a sort of AGREEMENT ("romantic" or business-like) with a man?
She meant “romantic” pimps. You can derive it from the context. I asked her if she had a pimp. No, she hadn’t. Are these girls in love with their pimp? She said: but the pimp is not in love with here, he only cares about the money. And THEN she said… many girls who work here have a pimp. I think she means the lover-pimps.

Lover-pimps are human traffickers. It could technically be true that the woman CHOOSES to stay with her pimp, but at the same time she could be FORCED into prostitution. And FORCE happens easily. Even when at first the woman likes working as a prostitute, when there’s a point where the pimp decides when or where the woman should work or else… then it’s human trafficking. It’s simple. Remember that most victims of the lover-pimps are subjected to violence.

But things are not that easy. I believe there is a gradual transition between forced and not-forced. Where do we draw the line?

Okay, a case I just read today:
A Latin American woman (Maria) falls in love with a guy of whom she knows is a pimp. She wants to work for him as a prostitute too. She does that for 15 (!!!) years and hands over all the money to him. She believes she is HIS girlfriend and the other women who work for him are JUST for the money (or so she believes). Until one day one of his other girlies (who doesn’t know this Maria also works for the same pimp) tells Maria that she asks the pimp about who Maria actually was? The pimp said: “Oh, she just takes care of the documents”……… That’s when Maria realized that she was really JUST one of his girls.

For me this is a case of human trafficking: she hands over all the money to him. But, I have to say, that this woman is a tiny bit naive. And she is clearly involved in recruiting new girls for him. Actually, she also is a perpetrator. She knows exactly what he’s doing and cooperates without remorse. She is a victim and a perpetrator all at the same time.

Another case:
A woman with a child falls deeply in love with a man. The man forces her to work as a street-prostitute. She’s beaten up when she refuses (=forced). But, despite all the violence, she stays with him (=voluntary). He takes all the money.

Voluntary-Forced, both at the same time.

Another case (made it up). A very poor African woman who struggles to survive accepts an offer to work as a prostitute in Amsterdam. She will receive 10% of the turnover, which is a lot of money where she lives!!! I my eyes this is a clear abuse of her vulnerable situation, but… she’s happy…

Where do we draw the line 5%, 10%, 20%, 50% (of the turnover)? It’s difficult to say. I don’t think you can easily draw a clear line between pimping from human trafficking.

forcing women to prostitute themselves, reducing them in slavery
Using deceit also falls under trafficking. Force is not the most important thing. Call it abuse.

….much crap are Scharlaken Koord's data and how much wrong you are in giving credit to these bigots….
The Scharlaken Koord is anti-prostitution. But they are very professional and know exactly what they are doing.

I forgot to say a thing. I actually have done some short interviews with prostitutes (through the internet). I questioned some window-prostitutes. 2 confirmed that most Dutch window-prostitutes enter prostitutes because of a lover-pimp. One said that most younger women are forced, but some older women too. Actually, one denied it. She didn’t believe there was any human trafficking at all. I asked them to roughly estimate how many women are forced. The numbers where 20%, 50%, 15%, 30%, 0%. That’s what they said. What the Scharlaken Koord is saying is not so strange at all!

About the bruises:
I’ve been digging into my memory. What I know is that pimps rarely beat in the face. They could beat on the head where the hair grows (there you won’t see bruises because the hair covers it). If you beat with the flat of your hand bruising will be minimal. There are special torture techniques. I’ve read about one case where a woman had to bend over, and she was beaten on her stomach with a bottle. But I still remember stories where victims actually say they have bruises. Hmmmmmmmm……. Well, what could also be true is that you will see less bruising under the red light. That’s a possibility. (and of course the camouflage cosmetics)

More on camouflage cosmetics:
http://www.webmd.com/content/article/76/90250

Plus a tip:
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=1006060217383
Somebody asks:
I have a huge red, black, bule, & green bruise on the back of my calf and I'm going to a graduation tomorrow. The skirt I'm supossed to wear is rather short and I can't just wear something else. I have some make up, but it doesn't look so hot. Any ideas other than make up? And tips about covering a bruise with make up? Please, this is URGENT! The bruis is absolutely huge! It's kind of disgusting...

Best Answer - Chosen By Voters

Use a concealer stick. They are thick and cover well. Set it with some powder, and wear some hose. It couldn't hurt to ice it and take some advil as well.


The concealer sticks are a possibility. Combined with the red light (which makes the skin look more beautiful) it must be possible to cover bruises. I’ve read about a nude dancer who also was a heroin addict who used something to cover the injection-scars on her arms. It can be done.

More about concealers:
http://health.ninemsn.com.au/article.aspx?id=52166
Any make-up artist will tell you that their single most vital make-up tool is concealer. Applied with know-how, concealer contributes to a flawless complexion, covering spots and blemishes, spider veins and dark circles and evening out skin tone. Here's how to get the best result.

Jonathan said...

Sorry guy, I give you credit for your honest concern about prostitute's safety and health, but it seems to me you are more and more engaged in building theorethical justifications for your beliefs (let's look at the whole issue of "camouflage cosmetics" ...), instead of looking at the basic misunderstanding.

After all, if you are really convinced that "lover-pimps are human traffickers", just like slave traffickers, I doubt I can say anything more to make you change your mind.

When you say: "Even when at first the woman likes working as a prostitute, when there’s a point where the pimp decides when or where the woman should work or else… then it’s human trafficking. It’s simple. Remember that most victims of the lover-pimps are subjected to violence." you are really mixing different conditions and making a mess.

At the "point where the pimp decides", it's slavery, of course.
But in many cases (I think the most cases) the woman keep the possibility to say "NO".

You said: "It's simple".
Yes, it is.
But not in the way you are saying.

The really simple thing that divide free choice from slavery is not the possibility that, "one day, the pimp decides".
The real thing is the answer to the very simple question:
can the woman safely stops prostituting, at any time, if she wants?

It's a quite simple question that has very simple answers: yes or no.

Once verified that, every other aspect (money, true or feigned love, even beating ...) it's just a different issue.

In my opinion, being unable to understand that means being unable to understand prostitution market.
And every further reasoning is then based on feet of clay.

Donkey said...

but it seems to me you are more and more engaged in building theorethical justifications for your beliefs
True. I try to create a theory. And I check if it’s right. And then you try to figure out if all the data (statistics and anecdotes) matches my theories. And then you’ll stumble upon paradoxes. The bruises-paradox is one thing. I have another one. Every once in a while you hear a dramatic story from a victim of human trafficking how a colleague of her mysteriously disappears (probably murdered). You should expect that the police finds a lot of dead bodies of prostitutes killed by human traffickers.

FACT: during the last several decades there have been many (mainly street-)prostitutes who have been murdered. But never proven to be by a human trafficker or pimp. Usually they are clients or junks who do that. There’s a person in the Netherlands who even has devoted a special webpage to that problem (mensenhandel.punt.nl). This person also believes that human trafficking is rare. (He has known many prostitutes personally)

Another paradox. There are lots of Latin American prostitutes in the Netherlands AND they rarely show up as victims of human trafficking. But…… there’s a Brazilian study on human trafficking which figured out that the Netherlands is number 2 as main destination country for Brazilian victims of human trafficking who are trafficked abroad (9% of the victims ends up in the Netherlands, Spain is ranked first, Italy is ranked fourth):
Study on trafficking in women, children and adolescents for commercial sexual exploitation in Brazil
http://www.scslat.org/search/publieng.php?_cod_39_lang_e

I try to figure out these paradoxes. A solution to the murder-paradox is that human traffickers simply never kill prostitutes. And a solution to the Brazilian-paradox is that there’s simply hardly any human trafficking in Brazil in the first place.

For me it would be a great thing if I could find out with 99,9999% certainty which prostitutes are trafficked and which are not.

And yes, there’s a definition problem. What exactly is human trafficking? There’s no fixed definition of human trafficking. But in my opinion it would really be a bad thing if somebody has sex with a person who is forced or manipulated by a third person in the background. I would feel sick in my stomach.

Ethics: What is allowed and what is not?

Donkey said...

This discussion is continued over here:
http://jonathanx.forumup.com/viewtopic.php?p=358&mforum=jonathanx#358
and here:
http://jonathanx.forumup.com/viewtopic.php?p=357&mforum=jonathanx#357

Ali said...

AS A LEBANESE ARAB AUSTRALIAN I AM SHOCKED TO HEAR THIS BULLSH*T ABOUT MY FELLOW ARAB TURKS AND MOROCCANS THE FACT THAT THEY CAN EVER PIMP OFF THEIR SISTERS ON THE STREETS OF HOLLAND. IN OUR COMMUNITY THE GUY WOULD GET HIS HEAD CHOPPED OFF RIGHT AWAY.I AM EMBARRASSED BY THESE MOROCCAN DOGS AND IF US LEBANESE BOYS WERE UP THERE IN HOLLAND WE WOULD SHOOT THEM ONE BY ONE FOR MESSING WITH OUR SISTERS' HONORS AND OUR HONOR IN AUSTRALIA WE LOVE OUR ARAB WOMEN AND CARE ABOUT THEM IF A LEB PIMPED A LEB GIRL OFF ON THE STREET HE WOULD GET BEHEADED IN A SECOND LIKE WHAT HAPPENED 3 YEARS AGO ON CANTERBURY ROAD

Anonymous said...

this blog is really inspiering