Underground prostitution on rise in Utrecht after window closure

Illegal prostitution is on the rise in Utrecht after the municipality closed the prostitution zones in Zanpad and Hardebollenstraat in 2013.

This is according to research done by RTV Utrecht. Based on the police's annual figures, officers discovered 14 illegal brothels, massage parlors and prostitutes that worked from home in 2013. In 2014 the police discovered 10 such places and in the first few months of 2015, that number has already reached 6. This is compared to no more than three cases of illegal prostitution in 2012.

Prostitute Caja van Tolie told the regional broadcaster that the increase in illegal prostitution can definitely be attributed to the municipality closing the prostitution zones. "With the closure of Zanpad and Hardebllenstraat 330, women were put out on the street", she said "Prostitution is their jobs and they are now looking for other possibilities to practice this profession." According to Van Tolie, the only difference is that the prostitutes don't have rights anymore. "You can't rent a house or take out an insurance policy."