Le Mouvement du Nid – France is a French organization working against prostitution. Along with the organization Pystel they have conducted a study called ProstCost to examine the economic and social costs of prostitution.
The research concluded two estimates:
1. the number of prostitutes in France
2. a calculation of 29 economic posts that together amounted to EUR 1.6 billion.
The reason for the study was that the EU asked France to calculate the turnover from prostitution in France in 2014, which were to be presented as part of their GDP. France refused to carry out such a calculation as it was felt that prostitution is carried out under duress and involves exploitation of people. Below you find the estimated costs of prostitution in France, showing that it is not about revenue.
1. Expenses for assistance to victims
People in prostitution are six times more vulnerable to rape and are seven times more likely to commit suicide. This costs the French state between 252 and 370 million per year. As a comparison, support for preventive measures is put at 65 million euros per year.
2. Integration of the economy in the fight against pimping
According to ProstCost the economy should integrate the work against pimping as this work cost the state an estimated EUR 3.2 billion, and the budget for the police and other community stakeholders to help people in need will cost the state 12 million euros.
3. Demand is the root of exploitation and social costs
Those who purchase sex want to satisfy their own needs at another person’s expense. The study showed that if the “clients” (sex buyers) would stop buying sex it would save the French society several hundred million euros per year.
Because of the current prostitution system in France, it has been estimated that it could cost the country up to 1.6 billion euros per year. The study shows that with the economic and ethical investment in prevention efforts against prostitution can reduce these costs, and the idea that prostitution could be seen as a source of income for the community is inaccurate.