The dictionary definition of prostitution is:
“the practice or occupation of engaging in sexual activity with someone for payment”.
Prostitution is a long-standing profession that is alive and well in Australia. Each State in Australia has its own rules and regulations which govern prostitution.
Prostitution is governed by the Prostitution Act 1999 and the Criminal Code Act 1899 in Queensland.
Chapter 22 of the Criminal Code defines prostitution as follows:
A person engages in prostitution if the person engages, or offers to engage, in the provision to another person, under an arrangement of a commercial character, of any of the following activities—
(a) sexual intercourse;
(c) oral sex;
(d) any activity, other than sexual intercourse, masturbation or oral sex, that involves the use of 1 person by another for his or her sexual satisfaction involving physical contact.
In 1999 the laws governing Prostitution were over-hauled by the Prostitution Act 1999. In reforming the law relating to Prostitution parliament’s intention was to do the following:
- Protect the value, harmony and character of local communities in which brothels operate;
- Improve the personal safety of persons involved in the sex industry;
- Minimise the health risks associated with prostitution;
- Prevent corruption and organised crime; and
- Enhance business transparency in prostitution enterprises.
The Prostitution Act introduced a licensing scheme which legalised prostitution provided through licensed brothels. The Act established the Prostitution Licensing Authority which oversees strict licensing, and operational and accounting requirements, in respect of licensed brothels.
The Act also introduced onerous health and safety standards that brothels need to comply with such as regular medical check-ups for sex-workers and ensuring the use of condoms.
Is prostitution legal in Queensland?
The answer to that question is yes but only in certain circumstances.
In Queensland Prostitution in licensed brothels is legal, but street prostitution is illegal.
It’s against the law to:
- publicly offer someone sex for money or money for sex,
- accept the offer,
- operate a brothel without a proper licence,
- enter or leave a brothel that is not properly licensed
- to be at a premise used for prostitution, whether licenced, or not knowing that a minor or intellectually impaired person is at the premises.
If you have any questions about the law and prostitution, or would like to speak with us about any other legal matter, our contact details are on our website.