Prostitution should be completely decriminalised in the UK opening the way for "mega-brothels" like those found in Germany, a representative of the International Union of Sex Workers has stated.

Laura Lee, who has worked in the sex industry for 20 years, said it is "none of the state's business" if two adults consent to having sex.

I've been a sex worker for 20 years. I love my job, I truly do.

Appearing on Newsnight, Lee raised her concerns ahead of EU proposals to criminalise the purchasing of sex.

"I've been a sex worker for 20 years. I love my job, I truly do.

"And I don't think I'm quite different from the vast majority in saying that," she said.

"The current proposals that are on the table really concern me because it seems to me that it will create a police state. Because when consenting adults are having sex that is none of the state's business.

"Would I be happy to work in a mega-brothel? Yes I would.

"I'm not saying the sex industry is for everybody necessarily, I'm saying that it has been my choice and I have loved what I do.The same can be said of many of my colleagues.

"My big concern with this current push that's going on is that the voices of sex workers have not been heard, we have not been consulted," she said.

The International Union of Sex Workers is calling for the total decriminalisation of prostitution as is practiced in New Zealand. It gives power to sex workers to work how they want, whether that is a big brothel, a small brothel set up by women working together, lone sex workers, or street work.

Buying and selling sex is technically legal in the UK, but other related activities such as soliciting for sex in a public place, kerb crawling and running a brothel are still illegal.

A UK parliamentary report into the sex trade is due to be published next month and any change in the law is unlikely to happen before the 2015 general election.


Germany legalised prostitution in 2002 and is now dominated by mega-brothels. The move was aimed at prising women away from pimps within the black market trade.

One of the largest brothels in Europe - This is Paradise - is situated in Stuttgart and boasts a restaurant, a cinema, a spa and 31 private rooms for hundreds of male clients each day.

The number of prostitutes in Germany is thought to have doubled to 400,000 over the last 20 years.

Critics argue Germany's liberal attitude towards its sex laws has now normalised prostitution.

Charlotte Britz, the socialist mayor of the city of Saarbrucken, where a mega-brothel is soon to open, thinks the country's liberalisation is out of control.

She told the BBC: "Prostitution has existed for many years in Germany, and we have brothels in the city centre which are more or less accepted, but it's now simply become too much.

"It should not be about every country offering a different solution. Instead we should agree rules on a Europe-wide basis and then we wouldn't have sex tourism from one country to another."