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Prostitution returns to the political debate in Italy

A regional deputy of the Lega party proposed to use “women in shop windows” to relaunch tourism.

SOURCES Protestante Digital AUTHOR Evangelical Focus ROME 09 OCTOBER 2019 17:00 h GMT+1
In Italy, it is forbidden to request sexual services in a public space and toopen a brothel / Michael Dziedzic, Unsplash CC

The debate on how to regulate prostitution has returned to the Italian political arena, after a controversial proposal by Roberto Salvini.



Salvini does not share any relationship with the leader of Lega party, Matteo Salvini, although until recently he was a regional deputy in Tuscany.



Roberto Salvini´s idea of using “women in shop windows”, with the purpose of relaunching tourism, has not only cost him his position in the party, but has generated great outrage.



“If half of Europe invests in that, don't we want to get the blindfold out? I was at the fairs in Germany 20 years ago, it is the same in Holland, in Austria, and in France: we found women in shop windows. For some people that is also tourism, otherwise they would not be there”, said the deputy during a meeting on regional tourism.



According to Salvini, “it is useless to become moralists, moreover, then you go to those places - and find many Italians”.



 



INDIGNATION AND REJECTION



The words of Roberto Salvini have not been well received even by his own party, which has suspended him by direct order of the leader, Matteo Salvini.



The vice president of the regional government of Tuscany, Monica Barni, said that “his words are shameful. It is a vision that goes back to a debate 50 years ago”.



The new Minister of Public Administration, Fabiana Dadone, has assured that “in the face of such an intolerant vision, there is no other solution but to be all united to fight for an effective gender parity”.



From Italy, the journalist and collaborator of Spanish news website Protestante Digital, Verónica Rossato, points out that “hypocrisy and double standards reign”.



“The response of the representative of Lega in Tuscany, Daniele Belotti, to the statement of the now suspended regional deputy, shows that he is not anoyed with the proposal of women in shop windows because it legitimizes prostitution, but because it does not favor the control of the government over this aberrant practice”, she says.



 



BELOTTI: “WE DO NOT WANT WOMEN IN SHOP WINDOWS”



Precisely, Belotti had denied that Roberto Salvini's model was that of Lega and had expressed they are in favor of legalizing prostitution.



“We do not want to put women in shop windows, but, following the example of evolved societies, such as Switzerland and Austria, to take them off the streets in order to ensure greater security in the cities, end the exploitation of women by criminal organizations, prevent sexually transmitted diseases and ahow the huge and uncontrolled tax evasion, guaranteeing millionaire tax collections for the State”, the leader of Lega in Tuscany explained.



According to Rossato, among all these things the government wants to achieve “there is nothing against the objectification of women, all aim to help the government to stay in business”.



 



ITALY, A COMPLICATED LEGISLATION ON PROSTITUTION



In Italy, it is forbidden to request sexual services in a public space, and to commercially organize sexual activity anywhere.



Brothels are prohibited and there is no more regulation of prostitution than their illegality in public places. However, regional governments can also implement their own laws on the subject, so there is no national uniformity.



This legal framework has not protected, for example, 80% of Nigerian women who have arrived in the country in recent years, who have been victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation, according to the International Organization for Migration (IOM) .


 

 


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Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.