SPAIN’s long standing grey area when it comes to brothels or salons could well come to an end if a new bill is passed in congress.
For many years, roadside brothels have been allowed to operate as there is currently no specific law that prohibits the operation of an establishment that sells sex.
The only stipulation is that the owner can not directly financially gain from the sale of sex as it would be classed as ‘pimping’ which is illegal. They can, however, sell pricey drinks and rent out rooms.
This has caused a massive grey area and has given shelter to many brothels that act as both trafficking and drug dealing safe houses.
All this is about to change however as a new bill has been discussed in the latest plenary session in congress on Wednesday.
The Right to Sexual Freedom act will aim to abolish the immunity that brothel owners have and abolish pimping in all its forms.
Minister of Equality Irene Montero, called for the bill to be brought before congress in Spain’s fight against sexual exploitation.
“Every year, the illegal sex industry earns €5 million per day, most of which is black money and is unaccounted for,” said Montero.
In August, Montero wrote a letter to all the autonomous communities in Spain asking for their co-operation in the closure of their brothels.
However the situation is a little more complicated than just their closures and the punishment of their respective owners.
The operation will need a large government funding effort to rehome, educate, patriate and treat many of the women who are housed there.
Montero estimates that a total of €140 million will be required to follow through on the bill which will include a specific ‘Employment Plan’ to create alternative work for the women involved.