Home ENTERTAINMENT German sex workers dealt a serious blow by the COVID-19 pandemic

German sex workers dealt a serious blow by the COVID-19 pandemic

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BERLIN (AP) – The number of people registered as sex workers with German authorities fell sharply last year as coronavirus restrictions shut brothels for months, official data showed on Thursday.

In 2002 legislation legalized and regulated prostitution in Germany, gave sex workers social benefits, and they are now obliged to register. But brothels have been closed for a long time since the COVID-19 pandemic hit as part of a wider lockdown in March 2020.

The Federal Statistics Office said that at the end of last year, 24,940 prostitutes were officially registered with the authorities. This was down from around 40,400 a year ago – a drop of 38%.

One fifth of the registered sex workers were German citizens. They were joined by 8,800 Romanians, 2,800 Bulgarians and 1,800 Hungarians, among others.

Sex workers protest outside the parliament of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia to demand the reopening of brothels in the state during the coronavirus pandemic in Düsseldorf, Germany, on August 27, 2020.  Authorities in some other German states, including Berlin, Bavaria and Thuringia, have allowed brothels to resume business under specific hygiene guidelines.
Sex workers protest outside the parliament of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, demanding the reopening of brothels in the state during the coronavirus pandemic, in Düsseldorf, Germany. Authorities in some other German states, including Berlin, Bavaria and Thuringia, have allowed brothels to resume business under specific hygiene guidelines.
Getty Images

It is not clear how accurate the business status figures paint a picture. Among other issues, the registration process was also disrupted by the pandemic and reporting procedures have taken time to establish in recent years.

By some past estimates, more than two-thirds of sex workers are not registered. The statistics office said it was unable to provide information on unregistered sex workers and brothels.

In Germany, brothel workers demonstrated against the closure of their business.
In Germany, brothel workers demonstrated against the closure of their business.
Acesparks

The number of officially sanctioned establishments offering sexual services – most of them brothels or the like – stood at 2,290 at the end of last year, a 5% increase from the 2,170 registered a year earlier.

Aurel Johannes Marx sits on a bed in his three-room brothel 'Lankwitzer 7' as he poses for photos and interviews with The Associated Press in Berlin, Germany, Friday, March 13, 2020.  Sex has long been a major part of selling.  The hedonistic nightlife of the German capital, but even the world's oldest profession, is suddenly falling into recession amid concerns over the new coronavirus.  For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can lead to more serious illness, including pneumonia.
Aurel Johannes Marx sits on a bed in his three-room brothel ‘Lankwitzer 7’ in Berlin. Sex for sale has long been a staple of the German capital’s hedonistic nightlife, but even the world’s oldest profession is suddenly falling into recession amid concerns over the new coronavirus. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can lead to more serious illness, including pneumonia.
AP

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