Regulation of prostitution: controversy throughout the European Union

The European Parliament passed a resolution in 2014 urging all member states to outlaw the practice. However, each country has its own, distinct legislation

A 2019 United Nations study states that 39% of Spanish men have ever paid for sexual services. These data place us at the head of Europe and as the third country in the world in which more prostitution is consumed. Last June, the Organic Law proposal -presented by the socialist group- to modify the Penal Code and “prohibit pimping in all its forms” was passed in Congress. The legal text proposes to punish anyone who pays in exchange for acts “of a sexual nature” with a fine of between 12 and 24 months. In addition, the vote was one of the most curious in the Lower House in recent memory: with the support of the PSOE, the PP and part of Podemos, since the seven deputies of En Comú voted against. In addition, ERC, Vox, Bildu and PNV abstained.

In European terms, the so-called gender equality, which includes prostitution of and scorts quito, is a matter for the Union. The Community Parliament -which congregates the will of the citizens of the 27 member countries- resolved in 2014 that “prostitution and forced prostitution are forms of slavery contrary to human dignity and Fundamental Rights”; and urged all Union bodies to legislate in favor of abolition.

However, the very complexity of the EU has meant that each State has codified prostitution as if it were an open bar. For a Union law to go ahead, a triple consensus is needed between the Parliament (which represents the citizens’ vote), the Commission (whose job is to look after the supranational interest), and the Council (in which each country defends its own positions). Thus – and despite the fact that the 2014 resolution on prostitution ends by saying that the European Parliament “instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council and the Commission” – no step has yet been taken towards common legislation.

Each country on its own

Prostitution in Spain is currently in a situation of alegality, in which consumption is neither permitted nor punishable. In fact, the Penal Code punishes forced pimping and exploitation, but does not mention any other cases. This laissez faire situation exists in other European Union countries, such as Portugal, Italy and the Czech Republic and escorts santiago of simpleescorts website.

Other Member States have decided to embrace in the last two lustrums the Parliament’s resolution, implementing the so-called Nordic model, which criminalizes clients, just as the Spanish Executive wants to do. In 2016 France decided to pass a law that punishes with 1,500 euros, 3,750 in case of recidivism, those who pay for obtaining sexual services. In addition, the regulation created a two-year program to help women who leave prostitution. For its part, Ireland also went a step further and in 2017 brought forward a regulation that penalizes citizens who obtain sex for remuneration, as they consider that this is the best way to protect women vulnerable to prostitution.

However, many central European countries, such as Germany, Austria, the Netherlands and Switzerland, have chosen to legalize the consumption of prostitution. Consequently, as in Greece, paying for services of a sexual nature is fully permitted, and therefore controlled and taxed. For example, according to the German Statistical Office, in 2019 there were 40,369 prostitutes with a valid registration in that country. A business that, legally, turns over millions of euros a year.

Origin and objectives of the European Union

The origin of the European Union dates back to the difficult times of the Second World War, it was founded with the aim of overcoming the economic crisis and promoting peace and well-being among the citizens of the continent.

The European Union

The European Union is an international geopolitical institution that watches over the interests of the member countries and their economic and political treaties that they carry out with nations that do not belong to the community.

It is a political community of international law, which was created to promote the integration and distribution of common goods throughout the European territory.

The European Union has developed a system with political and legal bases with very particular characteristics, which basically refer to a transnational form of government that shows similarities to multilateral cooperation agreements between countries.

The foundation of the organization is to promote integration between nations, promoting and controlling common policies seeking to achieve the much desired economic and social progress in a peaceful and equitable manner.


In 1951 the nations of France, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and West Germany, united under the initiative of Winston Churchill and Robert Schuman, in what was called the European Coal and Steel Community, which had international competition.

At the beginning of its functions, the body was based on three pre-existing communities, the Coal and Steel Community, the Atomic Energy Community, the European Economic Community, and then the Common Foreign Policy and Judicial and Police Cooperation were added.

A new international organization arises according to the parameters of the Treaty of the European Union which have been in force since November 1, 1993. The institution has a single currency, a flag and an anthem.

On December 1, 2009, a significant change occurred, which was established in the Lisbon Treaty, where the organization assumed a single legal personality subject to International Law.

Characteristics of the European Union

The European Union is governed by its own internal legislation, which combines elements of multilateral cooperation.

It is structured as a supranational entity, which means that the member countries give up part of their international powers for integration and the common good.

The Legal Order of the European Union governs the operation and determines the competences of the organization. It presents differences with international law and with the internal political regulations of each member country.

From this type of particular legislation, principles such as European Citizenship or the monetary union that manifests itself in the system for the implementation of the Euro have emerged.


The objectives of the European Union are established in its internal guidelines, its regulations are based on seeking continental unification for the benefit of the countries that make up the body.

The international community has the following objectives and powers, as indicated in the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union:

  • The fundamental objective that gave rise to the organization and is still in force, is to promote peace and human values ​​to promote a better world for its citizens.
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