Nevada Brothels
Terrible Situation shows why we need Decriminalization with women in charge
Not legalization and the pimp houses of Nevada

3/6/04 A Look Inside Nevada Brothels
Well I want to say a few things about the legal Nevada brothels. I am not sure if any of your readers are providers but if there are any who read it they need to know a few things about the houses in Nevada.

First you have to register with the Sherrifs office. There is no privacy. You give up anywhere from 65% to 85% of your money to the house, government, IRS and the new prostitute tax the state is now charging.

After your airline tickets, clothing, full price drinks and other misc. Fees you leave with little. To top it off, you are treated like a work horse and fined for just about everything. Fall asleep on you 14 hour shift at Old Bridge now named the new Mustang and get $100 fine, late for a line up, leave early ect $100-500 in fines.

The way the girls get treated by the madams is sad and uncalled for. There are so many guys who only want to pay $150-$200 and the girls are forced to take the party when after the taxi cut of 20-30%, house cut and room fees they get only around $40.

We still have to pay weekly doctors fees and taxes on top of that! I can say that I tried 2 houses and I just didn't have it in me to stay. I was happy for the education and I learned more than most about safe sex. I am gratefull for that. I just can not see working myself like that for so little.

Many of the women in those houses are lacking spirit and are quite sad. Men are called tricks and there is much bitterness. It is not uncommon for men to leave unhappy and feeling bad about what they did. I had one guy say he felt worse than he did when he came in after his session. Its the turn them and burn them method that makes all involved feel bad.

The women have to see as many "tricks" a night as possible to make any money at all. The brothel owners are worse than any pimp. They abuse and imprison women and are fully protected by the state. I thought brothels were a wonderfull idea before I knew what they are all about. Now I can't believe how that sort of business is acceptable and legal when it seems it is the most harmfull of all.


Dave says, thanks for sharing, I have heard similar stories over the years. This is why I use the Nevada brothels as an example why we do NOT want legalization, but decriminalization instead with the women in control. Instead of the government and house owners being a pimp, women should control their own bodies and how they do business. That is why decriminalization, not legalization is important to protect women and make sexwork the positive, holistic, healthy, wholesome service it is in so many other countries.

It works great in Canada, England and most of the world with legal individual women in charge of their own business with no need for controls or other requirements. Private sexworkers have very low STD rates and of course HIV is really a non-issue. But the general public seems to think zillions of controls and regulations needed since in the U.S. we don't have the hundreds of years of experience like Canada/England etc have with good results from independent sexworkers without any requirements.

Working In Nevada
by Laura Anderson

Many people think that a legal brothel system, similar to the state of Nevada's is the best way to allow prostitution to operate. Speaking as a former Nevada brothel intimate, current self-employed call girl, and sex worker advocate, I would like to inform others of the disadvantage to prostitutes created by this system. From 1986 to 1991, I worked at four different brothels in Northern Nevada. Two of them were large, well known houses. I met other women who had worked the state's brothels extensively, and certain common conditions prevailed which were disadvantageous to us.

By Nevada statute, the only prostitute can legally work is in the brothels. Due to intentional default, the state and brothels retain an unfair advantage in regulating the working women. Under this system, prostitutes give up too much autonomy, control and choice over their work and lives. Because prostitutes

are not allowed to work independently, or outside the brothel system, Nevada has essentially institutionalized third party management with no other options. While the brothel owners love this profitable solution, it can be exploitative and is unnecessary. prostitutes are usually quite capable of transacting their own businesses without interference.

Even though the brothels consider prostitutes to be independent contractors (convenient and less costly to them than employee status), the prostitutes do not have the control or freedom that independent contractors or sole proprietors have. If they decide to refuse a customer, management must be provided with what it deems an acceptable reason. Some "customers" should certainly be avoided at all costs. They might be rude, rough, or drunk, want too much for their money, have an attitude problem, or just simply be jerks. I don't think anyone should have to provide sexual services to men like that. Yet, many of the brothels put the burden of proof on the prostitute. She must justify her right to refuse business, even though she loses money herself by doing so. The prostitute is the best judge of who is eligible for her services, and she should be able to decide that without feeling pressured by a third party. Throughout Nevada, the standard percentage kept by the house per transaction is 50%. The brothels charge additional for room and board and several of them have the prostitutes supplement the house employees income by giving them required tips. This mandatory tipping can start at a minimum of $18 per day in the larger brothels. This is an effective way for the house to minimize its labor costs.

Another problem with the Nevada system is the restrictions imposed on prostitutes' freedom. They are required to live in brothels while they work there. 12 to 14 hour shifts are usually imposed and any plans to leave the premises of these establishments must be approved by management or a prostitute may forfeit her job or money. At most of the brothels I worked at, we weren't allowed to read books while waiting for customers in the parlor. If business was slow, this could mean a long, boring shift and a waste of valuable time.

Mandatory STD testing and sheriff department registration are also required. The houses discourage and in many cases forbid prostitutes to see doctors of their own choosing. My experience with the house doctors has often been rushed, inadequate exams for inflated prices; some even exhibiting a patronizing or sexist attitude! HIV testing is done on a monthly basis even though many health professionals say that testing twice a year is adequate. The people most concerned about the health of the prostitutes are the prostitutes, not the brothel owners, and certainly not the state, which imposes politically motivated and gender biased controls on prostitutes rather than holding customers equally accountable for their own sexual behavior.

Registering with the sheriff can be a conundrum, as fingerprints are sent to the FBI. If a woman is known to work as a prostitute, she is subject to various social and economic penalties such as being unable to get health insurance, discrimination in housing or future employment, or accusations of unfit motherhood. In several countries a known prostitute is not allowed to immigrate or her travel is severely restricted.

I am not opposed to brothels per se. They can be a good option, especially for less experienced workers who can benefit from the shared knowledge of other professionals. But when that is the only legitimate way a prostitute can work, she finds herself with no other way to conduct business legally, while the power of third parties over her is lopsidedly strengthened. This naturally leads to exploitative circumstances. Until the needs and desires of prostitutes are fully considered and included in any schemes legitimizing our profession, many of us will choose to work illegally rather than sacrifice values important to us like freedom, privacy, and control over our work, lives and bodies.
My short visit to Nevada, USA . . . WARNING!
From KC, a Canadian use to wonderful legal sex in Canada

The only thing good about sex industry in NV is its legality! Almost everything else is notorious and should be illegal.
I.e., you ask - how much does it cost to have sex with one of these lovely ladies? The answer always is something like 150-5000+, depends on what you want! Very useful, I kid you not! You go into the gals room supposedly for one hour but then she sends you on your way after you have done your deed in 20 min or so! You ask her- what happen to our 1-hour contract that we have just negotiated? She replies- honey, you should have been more precise in what you want! Anyway, it will cost you more if you like to stay with me! You scratch your head and walk away in silence! Later, you go in the room with another lady to have fun but then she ends up asking you for extra cash, every time you want to do something slightly different! I guess some whores expect you to **** them while holding a stack of cash in your other hand!

The whole culture in NV is tied to not necessarily how much a service provider would like to charge her clients but with how much one might be able to swindle at the end of the day, pure and simple! The bottom line is one has to be either dumb or blind not to see what is going on up there! Thanks but no thanks, one short trip to NV was quite enough for me and I advise all my other Canadian brothers to stay as far away as possible from so called legal NV brothels!

You see guys at least in Toronto we got hundreds of independent sex workers, many of them now have there own Web sites advertising on the net. If you check any of these ladies, at least one thing is very clear, they all post their (very reasonable) non-negotiable rates.
Highlights of Another Sexworker Report
April 26, 2000
A San Francisco whore in a Nevada brothel
Classiness and class-consciousness clash in a tale of two cities.
By Ann deLorenzo

To get to the brothel, I fly into the Reno airport and meet the "runner" who will drive me to the brothel a swaggering, poker-faced local named Stan. Stan doesn't talk much. At first I think he doesn't like me. Then I realize it's just business as usual. Jogging beside him to the van, I ask if we can stop and pick up some Baby Wipes, antibacterial soap, and paper towels. "We'll take care of all that," he says. "But first, we're goin' to the doctor's."

The madam had told me that over the phone too: as soon as my plane lands I'll go straight to the doctor's, and it will cost $85. On the way to the brothel, Stan pulls into the parking lot of a building with a sign that says Fast Medical Clinic it's the McDonald's of health care. Once I turn in the paperwork, a nurse takes me into a private room and draws my blood. Under Nevada state law, I have to test negative for chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and HIV before I can register with the county sheriff and get my work permit. After the blood draw, I have the world's fastest and most painless gynecological exam: A man enters the room, deftly inserts a plastic speculum in my vagina, glances around inside, and says, "Thank you, ma'am." He leaves the room without ever having made eye contact, and I hardly feel a thing.

Of course, the laws regarding prostitution are not primarily intended to protect me. The fact that we can only work in state-licensed houses keeps the brothel owners in business and protects the neighbors from whores running loose in their streets and backyards. State regulations benefit everyone but the working girl. (This is why most politicized whores want prostitution decriminalized, but not legalized, as it is in Nevada.) Meanwhile, the brothels pay as much as 70 percent of the county's property taxes. Hence the friendly relations between the bordellos and their neighbors. I had no problem getting directions to the nearby brothel from a cheery housewife watering the plants in her front yard. Try asking the locals on the streets of San Francisco the way to the nearest whorehouse, and you'll quickly see how unusual this is.

But let's not forget the connection between that helpful citizen and police surveillance. At nine the next morning, Stan takes me to the sheriff's office, where I have to present my test results to get a work permit. The secretary looks downright grandmotherly, but she doesn't take her job lightly. She orders me to stand on one yellow line while she photographs me, then another yellow line while she takes my fingerprints.

The fingerprinting is a difficult operation, since she insists on having total control of my hand which she stretches out so far that I repeatedly stumble across the yellow line. "Don't cross the yellow line!" she barks anxiously, as if I'm a dangerously confused teenager behind the wheel for the first time in driver's ed. After fingerprinting each thumb, finger, and all four fingers together on both hands, she checks me for identifying birthmarks, scars, and tattoos, as though there were a high probability that I'll escape from prison or that she'll have to identify my mangled body. By the time she finishes, I feel like I've just been through an arrest drill for hookers.

Upon my return, the madam introduces me to Starlet, who will teach me how this place works. There's something very prudish and schoolmarmish about her, despite her see-through red dress and big platinum hair. She opens a thick black binder and starts reading me the house rules one by one. "All new girls work from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. You can stay in your room if you want, but as soon as the bell rings, you have to be up in the parlor and ready to go.

"Never answer the door yourself. You'll be fined one hundred dollars each time you do. When the bell rings, you get in line with the other girls, and the greeter will answer the door and introduce you to the customer. You aren't allowed to talk to the customer while you're in line. That's called 'dirty hustling.' Some girls do it, but you're not supposed to.

"Sometimes the customer picks someone right away, but most times they don't. They're too intimidated by all the girls, so they head straight to the bar.

"You aren't allowed to speak to a customer before he's ordered his drink. Once he's ordered his drink, you can come on to him all you want but don't butt in while another girl's talking to him: That's 'dirty hustling' too, although lots of the girls do it.

"Never talk prices on the floor. When a guy's interested in you and wants to know your price, take him to your room. This is a classy joint: we don't talk in the parlor about what we do and how much it costs."

Like myself and many of the whores I know in San Francisco, a lot of the women who work here come from middle-class backgrounds. These women weren't forced into prostitution by poverty or drug addiction. Many of them chose whoring over straight work precisely because they found that prostitution was less exploitative than their straight jobs. Yet, unlike some of the San Francisco whores, these women don't seem especially interested in challenging the codes of sexual propriety.

For those with the temperament to enjoy the work, prostitution makes a lot of sense: It saves the creative and adventurous from nine-to-five tedium, offers good money and flexible hours, and allows one to go to school or pursue other projects one simply wouldn't have the time or money for otherwise. San Francisco is known for its bright, witty whores. Like the Nevada brothels, we're a tourist attraction, and we provide a service that will always be in demand. (Isn't it a shame the city wants to throw us all in jail?)

The Nevada brothel workers are a different breed. There are bright and witty whores here, too, but most are less interested in sexual freedom, which is why they don't mind the highly regulated brothel system. Unlike some of the radical whores in San Francisco, many Nevada girls are more concerned with "class" in the sense of upwardly mobile pretensions and refined aesthetic taste. The legalized brothel system reproduces middle-class values, such as the expectations of privacy regarding sex: the whores are confined to the brothel while working, and, even in the brothel, they aren't supposed to talk about sex in the parlor, because it's "bad taste."

There seems to be a connection between the absence of class-conscious worker solidarity and the sexual conventionality these whores display. When I get my first client, my trainer Starlet comes into the room with us. She's only there for the very beginning to teach me how to do "dick check." That's where I check the client's penis for visible symptoms of STDs. Once John and I decide on a price for a blow job and intercourse, Starlet spreads a towel on the bed and asks John to drop his trousers. As he pulls down his pants and boxers, his erect cock springs up like a flagpole.

Starlet puts on a latex glove and squeezes the tip of his cock, which eagerly emits a clear droplet. "What you're looking for," she turns to me, "is anything greenish white that's gonorrhea or any blisters or sores on the skin." She peels off the glove. "It's that simple. Now he can put his pants back on, and you take him to the cashier in the hallway, so he can pay."

From what I've seen, legalized prostitution is extremely confining. In some brothels, prostitutes can't leave the premises. Fortunately, here we can ask for time off when we need it. After three days indoors, I can't stand it anymore. So I go for a walk in rural Nevada. A few motorcycle bars around, some houses, not much else. The wide-open spaces don't ease my sense of confinement, though.

I wonder why this whole experience feels so familiar. On the plane out of Reno, I realize that it reminds me, strangely, of visiting my parents.
Some reactions to this news article
From a sexworker:
Although it may have sounded erotic to you, being herded into the parlour for line-up when ever a guy came into the ranch always made me feel more like a prize hefer at a 4-H club show than a lady.

... I don't know how an escort can possibly feel like a woman when she's lines up with ten other girls every time a man walks in. It would make me feel more like a product than anything else, and no matter what service I offered I would never want to be viewed as merchandise (I have worked unders such conditions by the way, and absolutely hated it).

And a better way as one provider said:
If a guy didn't choose out of the line up he could sit at the bar and chat with the ladies. The ladies would have to "hustle" to get a party with him. Personally I find the way I work here to be a much better situation for myself. I have a website, guys can see my rates and my pictures and hopefully from the text they get a bit of an idea of what my personality is like too. If they like what they see, they book an appointment. If not, they don't. And I don't spend 14 hours a day talking to men who aren't going to party with me. My time is my own.
Another sexworker on 11/5/03 writes
My Brothel Life
Some of women that work in the brothels become really reclusive. My one friend is going on 30 years, I believe. Her room-mate is also my friend and he says she stays in her room all the time at home! He thinks it because she is so used to being in "her room" at work. I remember staying at the Mustang and working 2-3 weeks straight and spending 2 months there with 3 days off!! All you did was eat, sleep, and fuck! It was tiring but you left the house with a nice chunk of cash. However, I needed time to make a transition to real life. I used to hide up in the casinos and eat room service and VEG for 2 days and then back to the Ranch. We worked solid 12 hour shifts where we were up and down doing line-up, after line-up and 14 Hours on the weekends! The brothels call us "independant contractors" but they make all the rules. Is that fair? No, but who's going to bitch or fight that system??? Jesse Winchester is a politician in Nevada and an ex-sexworker. She has been going up against the "good ole boys" in Nevada to change the brothel laws, but to no avail. The brothel owners association's representative, George Flynt (I loathe this man) will be retiring in a year. We are hoping for a major change in the brothels. One of my girlfriends will be consulting on a new place in Hawthorne. She is going to push for shorter shifts and fairer split. We'll see how it works.

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