• Switzerland edition
 
Zurich unveils 'sex boxes' for prostitutes
Photo: City of Zurich

Zurich unveils 'sex boxes' for prostitutes

Published: 15 Aug 2013 21:05 GMT+02:00
Updated: 15 Aug 2013 21:05 GMT+02:00

Due to be opened officially in a ceremony on August 26th, the nine so-called "sex boxes" are located in a former industrial zone in the west of the metropolis, the city said.
   
The site will be open daily from 7pm to 5am, and only to drivers, who must be alone in their vehicle if they want to pass the gate.
   
Echoing a fast-food drive-in, they will have to follow a marked route along which up to 40 prostitutes will be stationed.

Once they have negotiated a rate, they will drive to one of the nine car-wash style boxes to have sex.
   
The boxes will be equipped with alarms, allowing the prostitutes to make rapid contact with police if they are in danger.
   
With over 1.8 million people, the Zurich conurbation makes up almost a quarter of Switzerland's population, and the city itself has long been home to a red-light district.
   
But with local residents fed up of prostitutes and clients plying the streets, notably along the riverside Sihlquai, the authorities decided to try to shift the sex trade from the city centre.
   
In addition, officials have said that they want to ensure the safety of prostitutes, stem trafficking by crime networks and reduce the role of the underground sex trade.
   
The sex-box plan was approved by Zurich's voters in March 2012 -- referendums from the local to the national level are the bedrock of Switzerland's system of direct democracy.
   
Work on the new site cost 2.1 million francs ($2.2 million), below the voter-approved budget, while running costs are expected to be around 700,000 francs a year.
   
Zurich has spared no effort to encourage the prostitutes and their clients to leave the city centre and use the new site, making it as pleasant as possible, with grassy areas and decorative lights.
   
It will be marked clearly with signposts sporting a red umbrella, a well-known symbol for the sex trade notably in eastern Europe.
   
To avoid putting off clients, city authorities said they had no plans to install video surveillance or deploy police at the site permanently.
   
Social workers and security guards will be on hand, however.
   
The sex-box plan is just one of a series of measures in Zurich to deal with prostitution, which is legal in Switzerland.
   
Since January, prostitutes have been required to obtain a permit to ply their trade.

To receive one, they must have a Swiss work permit and health insurance.
   
In addition, they must pay a tax of five Swiss francs per night of work.
   
Clients, meanwhile, can only seek sex in three designated areas of Zurich — the new sex-box site, a zone near a highway, and, for those on foot, in part of the old town district.

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Swiss top two officially tapped for Davis Cup
Wawrinka and Federer at past Davis Cup competition. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

Swiss top two officially tapped for Davis Cup

Switzerland captain Severin Lüthi will tap the star power of Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka when the Alpine country faces Italy in next month's Davis Cup, Swiss Tennis announced on Wednesday. READ  

Worldwide damage from natural disasters drops
Swiss Re headquarters in Zurich. Photo: Swiss Re

Worldwide damage from natural disasters drops

Natural disasters caused total economic losses of $41 billion in the first six months of this year, much less than usual, reinsurance group Swiss Re estimated on Wednesday. READ  

Swiss consumer spending falls: report
Vehicle registrations rose but other consumer spending indicators dropped. Photo: AFP

Swiss consumer spending falls: report

Swiss consumer spending and sentiment dropped in July after reaching a six-year high in the previous month, UBS said in a report issued on Wednesday. READ  

Driver jailed for running over footballer — twice
Photo: Sukhjeet Batth

Driver jailed for running over footballer — twice

A 24-year-old man in Geneva is appealing a jail sentence of four years and six months for driving into a football player twice while drunk — the second time intentionally — causing injuries that forced the athlete to give up his career. READ  

Federer advances to US Open second round
Photo: Don Emmert/AFP

Federer advances to US Open second round

Switzerland's Roger Federer advanced to the second round of the US Open tennis tournament on Tuesday with a 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (7/4) victory over Australian Marinko Matosevic. READ  

Feud confirmed in mosque shooting death
Photo: Saint Gallen cantonal police

Feud confirmed in mosque shooting death

Police confirmed on Tuesday that the shooting death of a man in a mosque in the Swiss city of Saint Gallen last Friday was the result of a settling of accounts between two Albanian families. READ  

Zurich officials declare 'sex boxes' a success
Photo: City of Zurich

Zurich officials declare 'sex boxes' a success

Swiss authorities are basking in the afterglow of a decision to create a "sex drive-in" in Zurich, with social services hailing it a success on its first anniversary on Tuesday. READ  

WHO urges ban on e-cigarettes for minors
Photo: Jim Watson/AFP

WHO urges ban on e-cigarettes for minors

Governments should ban the sale of e-cigarettes to minors, the Geneva-based World Health Organization said on Tuesday, warning that they pose a "serious threat" to foetuses and young people. READ  

Swiss officials deny Mafia arrests in Thurgau
Scene from Italian police video. Photo: YouTube

Swiss officials deny Mafia arrests in Thurgau

Justice officials in Bern are denying reports from Italian police that 16 alleged members of the Mafia were arrested in the town of Thurgau, a Swiss town, saying that investigations are still ongoing. READ  

Geneva private banks set to reveal first results
Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

Geneva private banks set to reveal first results

UPDATED — The elite of Swiss private banks on Tuesday began lifting the veil on their books after a radical shift in their business model, amid tougher international regulations and crackdowns on tax dodgers. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Health
Increase in mountain bike accidents keeps Swiss hospitals busy
National
Swiss policeman belatedly hailed for saving Jews from Holocaust
National
'Suicide tourists' to Switzerland double in three years: study
National
Swiss Post SMS scheme gets stamp of approval after pilot project
Business & Money
American tax evasion crackdown hits Swiss private banks' bottom line
Politics
Woman accuses Swiss politician in nude selfies scandal of lying
National
Villagers in Graubünden valley reject hydro plant to protect vultures
Business & Money
Court rules against appellation for absinthe from Neuchâtel valley
National
Two hundred passengers rescued after landslide derails Swiss train
Travel
Switzerland remains world champion for per capita train travel
Culture
Social media backlash forces Polanski to bow out of Locarno film festival
National
Two policemen identified among three Israelis killed in train crash
Features
Untouched Alps: The Local explores Switzerland's only national park
National
Swiss government secretary tweets nude ‘selfies’ taken at work
International
Swiss couples fined in Ibiza for making love in van without seatbelts
National
Schumacher medical record theft suspect hangs himself in Zurich cell
National
Thousands of motorists drive without permits in Switzerland: report
National
Switzerland celebrates the centennial of national park in Graubünden
National
Animal rights group protests over dead fish throwing at festival
National
Federer forced to tear down kids' play area at Graubünden holiday home
National
Zurich taxis charge world’s most expensive fares: new survey
National
Swiss bus driver charged with careless driving in fatal Norway crash
National
European Union rejects Swiss bid to rejig freedom of movement deal
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

2,064
jobs available