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Prostitution in Finland


Prostitution in Finland

Prostitution in Finland is legal but soliciting in a public place, organized prostitution (operating a brothel or a prostitution ring and other forms of pimping) is illegal.[1] According to a 2010 TAMPEP study, 69% of prostitutes working in Finland are migrants.[2] As of 2009, there was little 'visible' prostitution in Finland as it was mostly limited to private residences and nightclubs in larger metropolitan areas.[3][4]


  • Legal framework 1
  • Advocacy 2
  • Research 3
  • References 4
  • Bibliography 5
  • External links 6

Legal framework

Buying or attempting to buy sex from a minor is illegal.[5] The Public Law and Order Act prohibits offering or buying sex in a public place. The criminalisation of the purchase of sex from adults has been a continuing topic of discussion in the Nordic countries. In June 2006, parliament voted by 158 to 15 with four abstentions to approve a bill which outlaws the buying of sexual services from sex workers if it is linked to human trafficking.[6][7] The issue was raised again in 2013 by the Justice Minister.[8]


Pro-tukipiste r.y. (Pro Centre Finland),[9] a registered non-profit organisation, supports and promotes the civil and human rights of sex workers in Finland, offering professional social support, health care services and legal advice, operating in Helsinki and Tampere. Services are provided without charge, anonymously, and the centre is politically and religiously independent. It also offers consultation on issues concerning sex work and human trafficking. They are a partner in the Indoors Project, a European Union initiative for the analysis and policy recommendations on sex work inside the EU.


The health of sex workers in Finland has been an ongoing project of the Finnish Government[10] and data suggest a good level of health, and in particular an absence of sexually transmitted diseases.[6]


  1. ^ "Country Report on Human Rights Practices in Finland". US State Department. March 11, 2008. Retrieved June 4, 2014. 
  2. ^ Rettman, Andrew (January 26, 2010). "Romanian sex workers most prevalent in EU/ Social Affairs / Romanian sex workers most prevalent in EU". EU Observer. Retrieved June 4, 2014. 
  3. ^ "2009 Human Rights Report: Finland". US State Department. 2010-03-11. Retrieved 2012-08-15. 
  4. ^ Finland’s prostitution laws strike delicate balance. Helsinki Times March 17 2010
  5. ^ Teen prostitution a silent problem in Finland. Yle June 3 2013
  6. ^ a b Workers in Finland Are Healthy, Government Reports. Finnbay 18 December 2013
  7. ^ Finns pass anti-prostitution law. BBC 21 june 2006
  8. ^ Justice Minister to seek full ban on purchasing sex. Yle September 4 2013
  9. ^ Pro-tukipiste r.y.
  10. ^ National Institute for Health and Welfare:Prostitution and health in Finland 2012-2014


  • Anne Maria Holli. Towards a new prohibitionism? State feminism, women's movements and prostitution policies in Finland, in Joyce Outshoorn (ed.) The Politics of Prostitution: Women's Movements, Democratic States and the Globalisation of Sex Commerce. Cambridge University Press 2004
  • Anne Maria Holli. Debating prostitution/trafficking in Sweden and Finland. 2004
  • Charlotta Holmström & May-Len Skilbrei. Prostitution in the Nordic Countries. 2008
  • Charlotta Holmström, May-Len Skilbrei. Prostitution Policy in the Nordic Region: Ambiguous Sympathies. Ashgate 2013
  • Matti Lehti and Kauko Aroma. Trafficking in Human Beings, Illegal Immigration and Finland. 2002
  • Gregg Bucken-Knapp, Johan Karlsson Schaffer, Pia Levin. Comrades, Push The Red Button! Prohibiting the Purchase of Sexual Services in Sweden but Not in Finland 2012 (excerpt)
  • Gregg Bucken-Knapp, Johan Karlsson, Karin Persson Strömbäck. Prostitution Policy Reform and the Causal Role of Ideas: A Comparative Study of Policy-Making in the Nordic Countries. 2009
  • Tage Alalehto. Eastern Prostitution from Russia to Sweden and Finland. Journal of Scandinavian Studies in Criminology and Crime Prevention 01/2002; 3(1):96-111. DOI:10.1080/140438502762467236

External links

  • State of Prostitution in Finland. What's up Finland 4 June 2012
  • Jaana Kauppinen (Pro-tukipiste) talks about sex work in Finland. Video Dec 17 2013
  • May-Len Skilbrei, Charlotta Holmström. The ‘Nordic model’ of prostitution law is a myth. The Conversation 16 December 2013
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