Prague, Czech Republic – According to a study conducted by Czech NGO Rozkoš bez rizika (‘Pleasure without the risk‘), which provides counselling for sex-workers in the country and fights the stigmas associated with prostitution, there are around 13.000 female prostitutes currently working in the Czech Republic.
According to the data released on Thursday, roughly half of them appear to be single mothers, and 13% of them are single mothers with three children or more.
Rozkoš bez rizika added that the data should be treated carefully and are only estimates, as there isn’t, of course, any official data about the exact number of sex-workers. “Many women do not admit providing paid sexual services. This work is a big stigma for women and is associated with many prejudices”, NGO project manager Barbora Pšenicová said, explaining that the isolation and secrecy surrounding their activities are often the reason why many of them don’t report cases of rapes, violence, extortion or coercion.
The average age of female sex-workers in the Czech Republic is estimated at around 30 years old. And while roughly half of the clients in the Czech Republic are foreigners, the share of non-Czech customers goes up to 70-80% in Prague alone.
According to their estimates, the prices range from 500 Czech crowns for one hour of “street sex” to 2.000 or 3.000 crowns per hour when it takes place in clubs or private homes. Many women, however, rely on business operators or managers, who may sometimes take half of the earnings for themselves.
According to the NGO, the number of Czech women who turn to prostitution as their main source of income has been gradually increasing over the past several years, reaching 82% of all female prostitutes in the Czech Republic today.
While prostitution per se isn’t illegal in the Czech Republic, most of the activities surrounding the sex industry and means to operate a business in that sector, such as keeping a brothel or pimping, are.
As in many other countries in Europe, the Czech Republic has been debating whether or not to legalise prostitution in the near future.