Prostitution in Switzerland

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Prostitution in Switzerland is legal and regulated; it has been legal since 1942.[1][2] Licensed brothels, typically with a reception and leading to several studio apartments, are available. Street prostitution is illegal, except in specially designated areas in the major cities. Many workers operate using newspaper advertisements, mobile phones and secondary rented apartments. It is legal to advertise for "massages" in Swiss tabloid newspapers. Swiss sex workers pay VAT (value added tax) on their services and some accept credit cards. The majority of sex workers are foreigners from the Americas, Central Europe or the Far East. In recent years the number of full service sex workers has increased.

Full service sex work is legal over eighteen years of age, having been raised from 16 in 2013, However it is still only illegal to recruit teens between 16 and 18, but a person is still not liable for utilizing the services of a worker 16 or older [3][4] (see Article 196 of the Criminal Code of Switzerland [5]). Furthermore, the local authorities in Zurich installed carport-like constructions called Verrichtungsboxen or 'sex boxes' to protect street based sex workers. [6][7] In 2012, voters approved the creation of "sex boxes" in Zurich to control suburban sex work. These have recently been described as a "success" by local authorities after a year[8] but a number of sex workers who have seen their earnings decline, disagree.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ McDonald-Gibson, Charlotte (2011-08-02). "Swiss biggest fans of prostitution after Spanish". Independent. London. Retrieved 2011-12-29. 
  2. ^ "Swiss biggest fans of prostitution after Spanish". The Local. Retrieved 2011-12-29. 
  3. ^ "Jugendprostitution in der Schweiz: Noch kein Verbot - SWI" (in German). Retrieved 2015-09-07. 
  4. ^ "Switzerland raises legal prostitution age to 18". CBC News. Retrieved 2013-09-11. 
  5. ^ "SR 311.0 Schweizerisches Strafgesetzbuch vom 21. Dezember 1937". Retrieved 2015-09-07. 
  6. ^ "Switzerland to vote on installing drive-in 'sex boxes' to protect residents in red light district". Daily Mail. London. 2010-08-30. Retrieved 2011-06-13. 
  7. ^ "E.U. Treaty Spurs Influx of Prostitutes to Zurich". The New York Sun. Retrieved 2012-04-11. 
  8. ^ "'Sex drive-in' hailed as success after year-long experiment in Zürich". The Guardian. 26 August 2014. Retrieved 2 November 2015. 
  9. ^ Damien Gayle (27 August 2014). "Switzerland's drive-thru Brothels hailed a success after year-long trial". Daily Mail Online. Retrieved 2 November 2015.