Registered: Sep 2003
Local time: 02:05 AM
Under Germany's welfare reforms, any woman under 55 who has been out of work for more than a year can be forced to take an available job or lose her unemployment benefit. Last month German unemployment rose for the 11th consecutive month, to 4.5 million, taking the number out of work to its highest level since reunification in 1990.
The Government considered making brothels an exception on moral grounds, but decided it would be too difficult to distinguish them from bars.
"There is now nothing in the law to stop women from being sent into the sex industry," said Merchthild Garweg, a lawyer from Hamburg who specialises in such cases. "The new regulations say that working in the sex industry is not immoral any more, and so jobs cannot be turned down without a risk to benefits."