Prostitute prescriptions: German Greens slammed for state-funded sex proposal

Prostitute prescriptions: German Greens slammed for state-funded sex proposal
Germany’s Greens party has been praised and criticized for suggesting sex services provided by prostitutes for people struggling with severe health conditions should be paid for by the government.

Doctors should be given a right to prescribe sex with prostitutes just like prescribing a drug, Green Party’s spokeswoman Elisabeth Scharfenberg told the German “Welt am Sonntag” newspaper.

“I can imagine public financing of sexual assistance,” Scharfenberg said.

The people in need would have to receive medical certificates confirming that they can’t get sexual satisfaction in another way, as well as providing documents proving that they are not able to pay sex workers by themselves.

“Municipalities could discuss appropriate offers on site and grants they would need,” Scharfenberg also said.

The Greens’ initiative takes after the Netherlands, where people have been allowed to pay for sexual services as medical expenses with their health insurance for a couple of years already.

The idea has been met with a fair share of scepticism. On Monday, Karl Lauterbach, member of the governing Social Democrats, told German Bild that “we don't need paid prostitution in homes for the elderly, and certainly not on prescription.”

Professor Wilhelm Frieling-Sonnenberg, an expert in medical care research, was reported by Welt am Sonntag as condemning the idea, saying it was “contemptuous toward human dignity.”

The German Patient Protection Foundation said that the people in question have other concerns rather than sex.

READ MORE: Over a quarter of Europeans think sex without consent is justifiable – poll

However, Vanessa del Rae, a sexual adviser for nursing homes, said that sex workers are a “blessing” for sick people.

Prostitution was legalized in Germany in 2002, with brothels openly operating in almost every town. “Night ladies” have recently begun to offer “sexual assistance” to people with dementia, the handicapped and people living in care homes. The services range from “affectionate touching” to sexual intercourse.