Prostitution - challenging and deterring men's demand: strategic approach

Sets our our collective approach, working with stakeholders across the wider public and third sector, to challenge and deter men’s demand for prostitution and support those with experience of it.

Key Aims

The key aims of our strategic approach are to improve support for women, including to sustainably exit prostitution, and to challenge and deter men’s demand through education, awareness raising, more informed public and private sector service provision and engagement, and where evidenced, through legislation.

The policy principles make clear the need for a national approach that is understood and promoted throughout policy and practice and reinforces that there is no place for commercial sexual exploitation in Scotland. Given that prostitution cannot be tackled in isolation, a whole system approach will be required to deliver the Strategy. The delivery will be supported by related work across the Scottish Government, wider public sector and third sector.

Our strategic approach focuses on four key components, which draw on underpinning policy principles. These key components are outlined in the diagram below and will be supported by key activities.

A key part of our strategic approach is taking a preventative approach, tackling the drivers of exploitation, taking account of social and economic inequalities. This Strategy therefore has relevance to the Scottish Government’s wider work to tackling poverty and gender inequality and creating a fairer society. Improved policy cohesion, with continued application of the Strategy’s policy principles is therefore an important aspect of our ongoing collective approach.

Diagram showing the key components of Scotland’s strategic approach to challenging demand for prostitution

Graphic text below:

Scotland’s strategic approach to challenging demand for prostitution.

  • disrupting, deterring demand and tackling its drivers.
  • improving access to support and tackling stigma.
  • a new support pathway.
  • recognising those involved in selling/exchanging sex are victims of exploitation.



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