Liberals divided on proposed brothel laws

Apr 8, 2013
Sex Trafficking
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The state government has not been able to pass planned legislation, introduced in late 2011, that would ban brothels in residential areas but allow them in limited areas such as entertainment districts.


Re-elected premier Colin Barnett has vowed to start the process again from scratch.

But WA upper house Liberal MP Nick Goiran and Liberal MLA Peter Abetz are opposed to the plan, saying the trade needs to remain illegal.

Mr Goiran agreed that the issue of brothels in the suburbs needed to be addressed, but he is pushing instead for the adoption of Swedish legislation, whereby it is illegal to procure sexual services.

“If the law says that it’s okay to go and visit a prostitute, then the stigma of visiting a prostitute is much reduced and … it increases demand,” he said today.

“That’s exactly what’s happened in the Netherlands.

“No matter where you go in the world where prostitution has been legalised, it’s led to a massive increase in human trafficking.”

Asked during the election campaign about the party’s plans, Mr Barnett said he would look at the Swedish model.

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