Does legalized prostitution increase human trafficking?


Author(s) Cho, Seo-Young, Axel Dreher and Eric Neumayer
Title Does legalized prostitution increase human trafficking?
Source World Development,2013, Vol. 41, No.1, pp. 67-82
Date 2013
Document type Journal article
Summary The article reviews case records in New York, examining the The study investigates the way in which domestic policy, in relation to the legal status of prostitution, affects the inflow of human trafficking into countries. The study discusses the two opposing arguments in relation to this topic. The first being that the legalisation of prostitution leads to better conditions for sex-workers and in consequence reduces the demand for trafficked women as businesses are able to recruit domestically from those who chose to be involved in the business. The counter argument that is debated by many is that by combating prostitution through legislation, human trafficking for sexual purposes will become more difficult. The stance on this argument lies in the notion that where legalised prostitution exists, the demand for women is much higher and therefore an increase in human traffic is likely to occur. The research conducted an empirical study of 150 countries and found that countries that legalised prostitution experienced a higher inflow of human trafficking.
Keywords Human trafficking; prostitution; crime; scale effect; substitution effect; global
Topic Human trafficking