Queensland Decriminalizes Sex Work: A Major Step for Industry Regulation

Admin | 2023. April 27. - 04:43

In a groundbreaking move, the Australian state of Queensland has announced the decriminalization of sex work. Under the new law, sex work will be regulated as a legitimate business, promising to bring the industry "out of the dark" and make it safer for sex workers.

The government will base the new law on findings from a Queensland Law Reform Commission report, which highlights the importance of overhauling current laws. Until the new law is passed, only services provided at a licensed brothel or by a person working alone from a premises, providing in-house or outcall services, will be legal. All other forms, including escort agencies, unlicensed brothels, massage parlours, street workers who solicit in public, and those who work in small groups, are currently illegal.

Illegal forms of sex work currently make up the majority of services, and current laws stigmatize sex workers, making them vulnerable to exploitation and violence. Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman stated that "we need to bring sex work out of the dark and properly regulate the industry, particularly for the safety of workers."

The Queensland government committed to decriminalizing the sex work industry in April 2022, and the commission's review findings will set the stage for a regulatory framework. The new framework will focus on the safety of sex workers and aim to make the industry a safer place.

Advocates of decriminalization claim that current regulations make sex work less safe, as they prohibit women from operating in pairs or employing someone to screen and book clients and provide security on jobs. The Queensland government is expected to consult with local government before finalizing the new laws.

The commission has reportedly made 47 recommendations, most of which have not yet been released publicly. One proposed law would allow individual sex workers to operate out of their homes, as long as they have obtained council planning approval. This change would allow sex workers to operate like any other home business.

The decriminalization of sex work in Queensland is a significant step towards regulating the industry and ensuring the safety of those who work in it. By bringing the industry out of the shadows and into the light, the Queensland government is setting an example for other regions to follow.