Why Prostitution Shouldn’t Be Legal

Evidence For Holding Buyers Accountable

The idea that legalizing or decriminalizing commercial sex would reduce its harms is a persistent myth. Many claim if the sex trade were legal, regulated, and treated like any other profession, it would be safer. But the research says otherwise. Countries that have legalized or decriminalized commercial sex often experience a surge in human trafficking, pimping, and other related crimes. The following research affirms that legalization or decriminalization is not the answer to reducing the harms inherent to commercial sex.

Prostitution, regardless of whether it’s legal or not, involves so much harm and trauma it cannot be seen as a conventional business.


Prostitution and human trafficking are forms of gender-based violence.

Legalizing or decriminalizing prostitution has not decreased the prevalence of illegal prostitution.

Legalization or decriminalization has not reduced the stigma faced by prostituted people.

Legalization or decriminalization increases human and sex trafficking.

Attempts to regulate prostitution have failed and adherence is low.

Legalization and decriminalization promotes organized crime.

The Nordic Model (criminalizing the act of buying sex, but legalizing the act of selling sex) has lowered the prevalence of street prostitution.

L.C. Nøttaasen

The Nordic Model has prevented an increase in prostitution overall.

Countries that have implemented the Nordic Model have seen lower prevalence of human trafficking than countries that have legalized prostitution.

Prostituted individuals often come from vulnerable populations and lack choice, while most sex buyers have abundant resources.

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