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Czech Republic: Government to map prostitution in 2009

The Czech Labour and Social Affairs Ministry will for the first time map prostitution in the Czech Republic in 2009, deputy minister Marian Hosek informed. SWAN member from Czech Republic criticizes the plan.

Hosek explained it would be no "mechanical counting of prostitutes" since the chance to obtain the exact figures was limited.

The ministry wants to find out the groups involved in prostitution and their possible links to trafficking in people and organized crime, Hosek added.

Ministry spokesman Jiri Sezemsky said that the project would map the forms of prostitution and their occurrence in various regions.

"The aim is to collect data that could be later used to minimize the negative impacts (of prostitution) on the public," Sezemsky said.

The ministry is now selecting a company to carry out the survey to be completed by the end of 2009.  It has earmarked 2 million crowns for the project.

SWAN Member from Czech Republic Bliss without Risk has criticized the ministry's plan. It points out that "the counting of prostitutes" is virtually impossible, and moreover it would be dangerous for the pollsters.

The organization has offered its data that it has collected in the past 16 years to the ministry. Its registry includes data on over 6000 people, but the ministry has allegedly not been interested in it.

However, Sezemsky said the ministry did not reject the offered cooperation and would definitely use the organization’s information in this field.

More information: Hana Malinova, Bliss without Risk, Hana.Malinova@seznam.cz