Added: Declan Strack - Date: 06.05.2022 13:22 - Views: 34078 - Clicks: 7139
It was there, just past the tobacconists, that she waited for customers. Anna was not required to give any of her income to anyone. When the weather was cold, she could heat herself up at the hotel and there was always someone there if she had problems. We agreed on the prices. And these women had no boss. Working for yourself is, for many women, one reason they prefer working on the streets to working in various kinds of brothels. They do not have rent to pay, are not tied to any working hours and do not have to hand over any money.
Unlike in brothels, where it is customary to have long conversations at the bar and to consume alcohol, contact time with clients on the streets is short. Since then, sex workers have vanished from Linzer Strasse. However, within residential areas, certain areas have the right to define so-called tolerance zones where sex workers are permitted to work. The red-light district in district 2 of the Stuwerviertel existed until , when the local administration also declared this area to be prostitution-free. Nowadays, sex workers in Vienna can only work legally in industrial and commercial zones.
There are property owners who view prostitution as being a reason for low rents. There are also locals who feel harassed by sex workers and their customers, and who complain about filthy streets and noise. These areas are not explicitly defined as tolerance zones, but the girls are allowed to work, as long as it is not a residential area. It is not always easy to approach the women.
The women have to use the bushes as a toilet while they are working. Sex with a street worker costs 30 to 40 Euros. That is what happens when someone is in dire straits and needs money. They are not all working permanently in Vienna. Many just stay for a while, meaning that some do not register as sex workers and leave the city after a short time. This can lead to financial penalties. There have been protests in Floridsdorf, where street workers operate amongst businesses and warehouses. According to the law, it is not acceptable for children on their way home from school to see scantily-clad sex workers.
Thus, time restrictions have been introduced, depending on the season: in autumn and winter, they are allowed to work on the streets from p. Given the current conditions, Anna would rather not work the streets any more. Providing sexual services in public is prohibited. But neither Brunner Strasse nor Einziger Gasse have a hotel with an hourly rate.
So where can she go? Really, I would need a pimp to look after me. On Brunner Strasse, there is a petrol station where women can sometimes use the toilet. In district 21, not even that exists. As a result, the women have relocated to the area around the bus station; the only shelter in an area full of abandoned business premises.
In Auhof, where a red-light district developed after the legal reforms, there have been four rapes in the past year, Anna says. As many of the girls have had bad experiences with the police, they stopped working. Many no longer work in Auhof because, in , Asfinag the managers of the Austrian autobahns erected a barrier overnight, without informing local sex workers. Anna did not give up the game. Nowadays she works in a brothel in district 5. The conditions are unacceptable. Knappik is a Viennese man who advocates for the rights of sex workers through the online platform sexworker. There are about 50 women working on the streets today; there were before the amendment to the prostitution act was put in place.
Some women have gone to work in brothels of different kinds and others have left the country or quit, due to their age, says Kappik, who has a good network of connections in this area and also runs a hotline for sex workers. Other women have resorted to working in areas where prostitution is prohibited. The new law has thus not contributed to a reduction in prostitution, but has forced many women to operate illegally.
Clients who actively seek prostitutes can also be penalised. The claim that street prostitution has made a comeback in the Stuwerviertel, as reported recently in the media, is far from the case, according to Knappik. As street workers have been removed from the streets, they have often been forced into dependency relationships.
So you have to work to cover your monthly costs. Consideration must also be given to infrastructure. The tendency is to move towards the abolition of street prostitution. Translated from German by Edward Alaszewski. This article originally appeared in Augustin , the street newspaper in Vienna, Austria.
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Austrian brothel offers sex for free to protest high taxes