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History of dutch prostitution legislation

Politicians have been trying for years to prohibit prostitution or change the rules regarding it. During the up-rise of 1598 prostitution was banned completely. Later in 1811 when the French were in control of the Netherlands this ban was revoked and the new rules stated that each city should decide for itself what kind of policy it would have, as long as the prostitutes would be medically examined on a regular basis. After the French rule was over, no clear policy was left until the 20th century. In 1911 the Dutch government passed some laws called the morality laws. By these laws the exploitation of prostitutes and the profession of pimp became outlawed. Despite the new rules prostitution did not decline notably in the years thereafter. It became clear that enforcement of the new laws by municipalities and government was a difficult job. Later from 1970 onwards, the policy regarding prostitution and brothels changed again. While cities like Rotterdam and Arnhem banned window-prostitution altogether, others cities including Amsterdam legalized it to a certain extent. The nationwide law changed again and in 1992 prostitution was legalized as long as the girls were at least 18 and no coercion or force was exercised in making them work. The ban on brothels that was introduced in 1911 was also lifted again. Since the year 2000 the municipal laws also changed again. From that moment on all businesses in the prostitution sector were required to attain a license. By working with a license system, municipal authorities have tried to limit the number of businesses active in prostitution and also limit the number of locations were these businesses sited.