Rome authorities have approved plans for a red light zone where prostitution will be officially tolerated from April. Ignazio Marino, the Italian capital's
centre-left mayor, gave his blessing on Friday evening to the experiment in the EUR business district south of the city.
The local council there has proposed allowing prostitution in one non-residential area with the aim of reducing the impact of a trade currently conducted on more than 20 streets in the district. If the experiment proves successful, the council wants to
establish up to three separate red light zones within the district.
Police will be ordered to impose fines of up to 500 euros on prostitutes caught working outside the permitted area, which will be supervised by health and social workers in a bid to counter exploitation by pimps and traffickers and promote safer sex.
Of course the miserable Church is quick to preach on other people's sexual choices, maybe in an attempt to deflect the spotlight away from its own sexual depravity.
Avvenire, the weekly magazine of the Conference of Italian Bishops, called the plan shameful for a city that is the cradle and the heart of Christian humanism.
Giovanni Ramonda, of the Pope John XXIII Community, said Rome would be introducing tolerance zones for the slavery of women. The Catholic group is campaigning for Italy to enact similar legislation to Sweden, where efforts to eliminate
prostitution have involved criminalizing clients rather than sex workers.
But the scheme won backing from the council leader in a neighbouring district, who said many parts of the capital faced similar problems with the social side-effects of street prostitution, which is already tolerated in practice in some peripheral parts
of the capital. Andrea Catarci said:
It is a courageous move and one the whole city - institutions and associations - needs to get behind.
Update: Courageous in Milan Too
10th February 2015. See article
A number of Milan politicians have come out in support of opening a red light district in Italy's financial capital, just days after plans for a prostitution zone were unveiled in Rome. Politicians from both left and right have backed the idea of opening
up a red light district.
Carlo Monguzzi, from the ruling Democratic Party (PD), said setting up a prostitution zone could be the only solution to tackling current problems. He wrote on Facebook:
Having a red light district in Milan is a good idea...We must help the women reduced to slavery and forced into prostitution who are beaten to death if they don't do it.
Luigi Pagliuca of the Forza Italia party added:
I would be delighted if the city council would move away from the logic of taboo and moralism, and openly tackle the problem and the situation of the oldest profession in the world.