LOS ANGELES—Even as sex workers in many other countries remain at the back of the line to resume business after the coronavirus-related lockdowns, in Switzerland, providers of “erotic services” are preparing to get back to work on June 6.
Sex work has been legal in Switzerland since 1942, but due to the worldwide pandemic, the country placed a temporary ban on sex-worker activities starting on March 16. But the country’s government announced on Wednesday that the ban will be lifted — and strip clubs may also reopen at the same time, according to a report by Forbes.com.
In the Netherlands, legal brothels must remain idle at least until September but restaurants, bars, and similar businesses involving large numbers of people in close proximity have been permitted to resume. But in Switzerland, where restaurants have been open for several weeks, sex workers will be back on the job but close-proximity activities such as ballroom dancing, Schwingen (a Swiss style of wrestling), and judo remain on hold for at least another month.
As AVN has reported, however, the Swiss government has imposed some unusual conditions on sex workers who resume work — in addition to banning sex with more than one partner, as well as facial contact such as kissing, “there must be a distance of at least one forearm between the heads of the two people,” according to the govermnent regulations.
Swiss Health Minister Alain Berset acknowledged that the guidelines will make doing their jobs awkward for sex workers.
“I am well aware of the bizarre aspect of my answer,” Berset told a press conference this week, as quoted by Forbes.com.
The guidelines also require that if sexual services are provided in cars, the vehicle must keep the windows open for at least 10 minutes, and the sex worker involved is responsible for recording the vehicle’s registration number.
Switzerland has been among the leading European countries in containing the coronavirus pandemic, with 222 deaths per one million population, compared to 346 per million in the Netherlands, 431 for Sweden, and 562 in the United Kingdom.
In his announcement this week, Berset admitted that “erotic services could have resumed earlier” in Switzerland.
Photo By Christophe Schindler / Pixabay
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