Prostitution itself is not illegal in Australia. However: Street prostitution
is illegal in New South Wales and Queensland (though not for the client)
and allowed in Victoria if it doesn't happen near schools, churches or hospitals.
New South Wales and Victoria allow licensed brothels.
Legal With Mostly Reasonable Restrictions
Queensland (QLD) prostitutes (male or female) have been allowed to work
out of a residential or commercial property provided that no more than one
person is working from each location for several years now, this includes
outcall services. Recent changes brought in by the Beattie Labor Government
mean that "Boutique Brothels", no more than 5 staff at a time and only 20
staff all up, are legal - they have to be licensed and be in commercial
areas away from schools, churches and hospitals and city or shire councils
can oppose a license being issued. The single person operations remain legal.
The police does not conduct sting operations.
The massage parlours in NSW usually require regular health checks from their
employees, as do the licensed brothels in Victoria. Working conditions in
these brothels seem to be rather poor: the women are bound by a large set
of house rules, cannot reject clients and are required to sign a contract
waiving their civil rights and entitlement to health and safety protection.
Police back brothels In Western Australia
(Note each Australian State has own laws which vary but private prostitution
is legal in all the States but laws regarding brothels vary. Currently in
the state of Western Australia only one person brothels are legal but that
may be changing):
August 13, 2007
POLICE have welcomed proposals to decriminalise and regulate WA brothels,
in a move due to be debated in State Parliament in the next month. WA Attorney-General
Jim McGinty will introduce legislation into State Parliament when it resumes
next week which would allow brothels to operate legally. Prostitution is
not prohibited in WA but it is illegal to manage a brothel and live off
the earnings of prostitution. The laws are archaic and need to be changed,
Mr McGinty said. "Prostitution is an unfortunate fact of life,'' Mr McGinty
"The new laws which we will be introducing to parliament in the next month
will see brothels regularised, to the extent that we accept the reality
that they are there and what we want to do is give local government the
power to regulate where they are located and how they operate. "We want
to give the police the power to properly control activities that might be
crime-related but most importantly we don't want the absurd situation of
the police being required to turn a blind eye to any illegal activity.
Organized Crime Detective Superintendent Kim Porter said the advent of new
prostitution laws would be welcomed.
Operating brothels have been a part of the City of kalgoorlie-boulder all
my life. Not sure why McGinty says its "unfortunate fact of life" - without
you guys they would not operate........Mr Ostrich once more! Most Ladies
have no objection. In my opinion, a well overdue piece of legislation
Posted by: Judy Simpson of WA
Prostitution should not be a criminal offence, it is a form of employment
for women who wants to work at this trade, it will reduce crime and allow
more police officers to be free to fight real crime. In suburbs a brothel
should be established in the industrial area away from children and people
wanting to use these facillities will not disturb the wider community
This should of been done a long time ago. As long as it's all behind closed
doors then it's not hurting anybody!
I understand Queensland in December 1999 authorized brothels to help the
From news article 12/99:
Boutique brothels will soon be legal in Queensland after Parliament today
passed controversial new prostitution laws. All Government MPs backed the
Prostitution Bill, even though one had publicly expressed reservations about
it. Government backbenchers described the move to legalise small licenced
brothels as a "necessary evil". But they voted to pass the bill.
To which someone replied: This bill was passed and the full parliamentary
caucus did support it, the general belief within the ALP is that this bill
is for the protection of the sex workers, there is greater security in numbers
and the bill allows for the employment of professional security gaurds.
Personally I have not heard any disent over it.
Tasmania is also jumping on the law reform wagon, with mandatory registration
of sex workers and compulsory testing for STDs.
NSW has certain sections of the street legalized for street work, and brothels
are legal provided they comply with town planning.'
Victoria has had a partially decriminalized system for 10 years! Many brothels
are legal in Vic, although street work is not.
NT has decriminalized escorts only, but is examining the prospect of legalized
brothels later in the year.
ACT has a decriminalized system that is the best in the world.
Governed by Summary Offences Act 1953 and Criminal Law Consolidation Act
1935 which seems very similar to Canadian and European laws again restricting
street prostitution and brothels but private individual prostitution totally
legal and no offense for a customer only the provider if restrictions are
broken. South Australia recently passed the "Prostitution Regulation Bill",
which was the best of four bills presented to the parliament last year (ranging
from increased penalities right through to negative licensing). This will
be the first time South Australians can legally visit a brothel.
In summary prostitution IS LEGAL in all of Australia but there are restrictions,
most of which I totally support, on street work, pimping (living of avails),
and brothels. But my main focus is on the right of the individual women
to choose private sex work as a legitimate, legal occupation, which is legal
in Australia and most all the world, except the U.S.
Advertising also seems to follow the Canadian and European model. As long
as not done on the streets, ads in newspapers, magazines, web sites are
totally legal and are usually legitimate unlike the situation in the U.S.
full of scams and rip offs, not to mention very high prices, due to the
unique legal status of sexwork in the U.S.
SYDNEY, Sept 23,2000 (Reuters) - As Olympic fever grips Sydney, the queues
are building up everywhere from trains to stadiums. It now even takes two
hours to be served in a brothel.
Keeping up with the Olympic pace is hard work for the girls at the legalised
brothels in the harbour city, madams report. ``It's like New Year's Eve.
We can't keep up with it,'' the spokeswoman for one brothel told the Sydney
Morning Herald. Clients had ranged from an Olympic basketball team to a
soccer team, she said. But the athletes, issued with three condoms each
at the Olympic village when the Games began, have to wait patiently in line.
Another brothel said regulars had abandoned it but Olympic trade was booming
with several athletes signing in under the name ``John.''
In the world's oldest profession, it shows that it pays to advertise. Sydney
prostitutes have been offering ``Sprints! Relays! and Marathons!'' in an
advertising drive to cash in on the Games. One brothel in the Lidcombe area
near the Olympic Homebush Bay complex insists in an advert in the Daily
Telgraph tabloid that it has ``gold medal specialists'' to entertain clients.
Another near the Olympic venues says: ``Go for gold! We always go the distance.''
FOR MORE INFORMATION SEE:
The Scarlet Alliance - Australian National Forum for Sex Worker Organisations
NOTE: For North American readers, no there aren't that many spelling
errors - since most of the above is from Australian sources, they spell
some words differently :)
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