• Norway's news in English
 

Rip up prostitution law, says top Oslo politician

Published: 22 Jun 2012 11:28 GMT+02:00

Anniken Hauglie (Conservative Party) called for the law to be scrapped after the city’s official help centre for prostitutes, Pro Sentret, released a report on Friday detailing deteriorating conditions for sex workers in the capital.

”The reality is that the law has made it more difficult for women in prostitution,” Hauglie said.

”It’s our political responsibility to take this feedback seriously. In my view, the sex buyer ban should be repealed, and I think the parliament should at least evaluate the effects of the law.”

The 2009 prostitution law prohibits the purchase but not the sale of sexual services, with legislators seeking to stymie the trade by targeting demand.

But the Pro Sentret report indicates that the law has in fact made prostitutes much more susceptible to violence at the hands of their clients as the sex trade moves further underground.

What’s more, prostitutes have become less inclined to seek help since the law came into force, with many now perceiving that they too are viewed as criminals, the report says.

Many of the women also said the new law had scared off many of their more reliable customers, while troublesome and violent clients were relatively undeterred.

According to the study, titled Farlige Forbindelser (Dangerous Liaisons), 59 percent of prostitutes in Oslo have fallen victim to some form of violence in the last three years.

”Violence against women in prostitution is brutal and frequent,” said Ulla Bjørndahl at Pro Sentret.

”Often the violence is extreme. Eleven people have faced death threats, many have been threatened with weapons, or have been exposed to robbery, rape, or were threatened into participating in non-consensual sex,” Bjørndahl told newspaper Dagbladet.

Anniken Hauglie said she was appalled by the report’s findings.

”It’s heartbreaking to see the violence they are subjected too, only to then learn that many of them don’t report (the crimes). That means the aggressors walk away and are free to endanger others.”

The report is based on interviews carried out from January to March this year with 123 prostitutes working on the streets, out of apartments, and in massage parlours offering sexual services.   

In a similar study from 2008, 52 percent of prostitutes said they had been the victims of violence.

The prostitutes who participated in this year’s study came from 16 different countries. Fifty were from Thailand, 24 from Nigeria, and 21 from Norway.

NTB/The Local (news@thelocal.no)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines

Ice climber falls to death in Norway

An ice climber of foreign nationality has died of his injuries after he fell between 30 and 40 metres while trying to scale a waterfall in southern Norway. Rescue workers desperately tried to reach the man, who got stuck on a ledge, but were unable to get to him in time. READ  

Muslims form 'ring of peace' at synagogue
Young Muslims link hands around the Oslo Synagogue on Saturday night Håkon Mosvold Larsen/NTB scanpix

Muslims form 'ring of peace' at synagogue

Norwegian Muslims organised a peace vigil in Oslo on Saturday in a show of solidarity with Jews a week after fatal shootings in Denmark targeted a synagogue and free speech seminar. READ  

 Glacier ice: The world’s new luxury ice cube?
An image of the Svartisen glacier taken from Svaice's website. Photo: Svaice

Glacier ice: The world’s new luxury ice cube?

Imagine you’re lounging in a Dubai sky bar and you get served a vodka martini filtered through thousand-year-old ice mined from a glacier in the far north of Norway. This is the idea behind Norwegian start-up Svaice. READ  

Dutch cons fear losing cushy cells to Norway
Norgerhaven Veenhuizen prison in The Netherlands. Photo: Dutch Ministry of Justice

Dutch cons fear losing cushy cells to Norway

Dutch prisoners have gone to court to block a ground-breaking plan to rent out spaces in their jail for criminals from Norway, where the prison service faces a serious capacity shortage. READ  

Norwegian's Filipina wife charged with murder
An autopsy room. Photo: Shutterstock.

Norwegian's Filipina wife charged with murder

The Filipina wife of a Norwegian man found dead in his bedroom last summer has been charged by police for pre-meditated murder after an autopsy report revealed signs of carbon monoxide poisoning. READ  

'Are you crazy? Why should I blow myself up?'
The woman's face on TV2 yesterday: Screen grab from TV2

'Are you crazy? Why should I blow myself up?'

The 19-year-old Oslo woman hunted by international police on suspicion of planning a suicide attack has vigorously denied any such plans, telling Norway’s TV2 that she had been planning to come back to Norway. READ  

Video
Northug takes gold in stunning comeback
Petter Northug in tears on the pedastal in Falun. Photo: Vegard Wivestad Grøtt/NTB Scanpix

Northug takes gold in stunning comeback

Norwegian skiing legend Petter Northug has pulled off one of the great comebacks in sporting history, taking gold in the cross-country sprint at the Nordic skiing world championships on Thursday. READ  

Norway prison to send imam to Muslim inmates
A winter scene at Ringerike Prison: Photo: Ringerike Prison

Norway prison to send imam to Muslim inmates

A Norwegian prison is to bring in a local imam to prevent Muslim inmates becoming radicalised in the same way as the young Dane who carried out brutal twin attacks in Copenhagen over the weekend. READ  

Norway hunts suspected suicide bomber
A class taking place at an ISIS bootcamp in Syria, such as the woman is supposed to have attended. Photo: YouTube screengrab/Karl-Ludwig Poggemann/Flickr

Norway hunts suspected suicide bomber

Norway’s intelligence services have put out an international alert warning about a female Norwegian Islamic militant suspected of planning a suicide attack in Europe. READ  

Bad-boy artist Melgaard's Munch pairing 'unworthy'
Photo: Cornelius Poppe / NTB scanpix

Bad-boy artist Melgaard's Munch pairing 'unworthy'

An exhibition showing an image of a painting by Norwegian artist Edvard Munch with a penis cut and pasted onto it has been condemned by one of the artist's descendants as “unworthy” and “undignified”. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
As it happened: Denmark rocked by terror attack
National
King Harald visits Antarctic namesake
Culture
Norwegians streak the streets of Berlin
Culture
Norway couple find love on word game app
International
What's keeping UK expats from voting?
Business & Money
FATCA: 'The age of financial privacy is over'
International
Norwegian chef wins world's top food prize
Sport
Real Madrid sign Norway prodigy Ødegaard
Politics
Solberg: The fight for freedom isn't won
National
Gaza doc named Norway's person of year
National
Norway extends Russian military freeze
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
National
Kjell Inge Røkke tops Norway's Rich List
International
Surprise! Norway priciest for home comforts
National
Norway terror attacks to become TV drama
International
Malala: Youngest ever Nobel Peace Laureate
National
Norway celebrates 25 years of Sami politics
Business & Money
CurrencyFair: Why it pays when making overseas transfers
International
Norway best country for older people
National
Muslim centre wanted on site of Munch Museum
International
Norway to send military staff in fight against IS
National
Father warns Breivik 'more extreme than ever'
National
Four-year-old Norway girl sleepwalks 4km
Travel
Cruise line offers Northern Lights promise
National
10-tonne shark found dead off Norway coast
International
'If Snowden wins Nobel Prize, arrest him!': MP
Culture
VIDEO: Swim ace does 'Pool Rubik's Challenge'
National
Norwegian man in 7,000 litre 'Ice Truck Challenge'
Society
Norwegian brewery pulls 'fart-smelling' beer
Sport
Ødegaard: Norway's youngest player ever
National
Miracle cat survives 20 gunshots in Norway
National
Second death within hours at Chess Olympics
National
Norway and Sweden mark 200 years of peace
Culture
Interview: Helene Meldahl, selfie artist
Society
Now serving ... Norway's smallest bar
Travel
Floating Northern Lights hotel planned in Norway
National
Circus camel escapes again
National
Swiss bus driver charged with careless driving in fatal Norway crash
Society
Brit's charity tractor trek heads for Norway
National
Norway lifts Segway ban
Culture
GALLERY: Ten great songs about Norway
Society
Høie promises to reform sex change law
Education
Norway fjord invaded by monster jellyfish
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

262
jobs available