Challenging men’s demand for prostitution

Papers to aid new framework published.

Two research reports to inform the development of a framework to effectively tackle and challenge men’s demand for prostitution have been published.

The publication of the lived experience report and international evidence review highlight the personal stories behind those involved in prostitution, the need to better understand and tackle the stigma that many feel, and the international efforts aimed at tackling men’s demand.

The lived experience report also underpins how many women involved in prostitution are unaware of support services that could potentially help break the prostitution cycle.

The international evidence review outlines that comparative international frameworks have three common strands - a criminal justice component that criminalises the purchaser and decriminalises the seller, support for victims aimed at helping and preventing those involved in prostitution from continued involvement, and changing social attitudes focused on informing the public of the law, prevent further demand and reduce violence against women and men involved. 

Community Safety Minister Ash Regan said:

“We want all women and girls to be treated with respect, and tackling sexual exploitation is key to realising this. We are developing a framework for Scotland that effectively challenges men’s demand for prostitution. 

“We must listen to and apply the lessons learnt from the approaches adopted by other countries, as detailed within the international evidence review research work. These reports are important milestones towards delivering our Programme for Government commitment.

“I would like to thank our short life working group and reference group for their contributions to date informing the framework’s fundamental principles, which we will publish later this year.

“I would also like to specifically thank those who have shared their experiences as part of the research published today we want to ensure our policies work for those involved in prostitution and remain committed to continuing to engage with those with lived experience.”


International Comparisons report

Lived Experience Engagement report


Media enquiries

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