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Phuket Poll Results: Legalize prostitution

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Phuket Poll Results: Legalize prostitution | Thaiger

PHUKET: Almost half of the Phuket Gazette‘s readers believe prostitution should be legalized and properly regulated, according to the newspaper’s latest poll.

While a majority of expat respondents (51%) favor legalization, just 21% of the Thai respondents did.

This is just one of many differences in opinion revealed by the poll, which provoked an avalanche of feedback from readers.

The poll asked respondents to choose a statement that best summed up their views on prostitution in Phuket.

In total 1,554 readers cast votes in the survey.

Of these, 44.5% agreed with the statement: “We can never get rid of prostitution, so we should legalize it and get it regulated.”

The second-most popular statement was: “Prostitution brings tourists to Phuket and benefits the economy. The status quo should be maintained.”

Just less than a third of the respondents agreed with that statement.

Roughly the same proportion of Thais (32%), expats (33%) and tourists (29%) were in agreement here.

Third-most popular was the statement: “Prostitution damages Phuket’s reputation as a high-end tourist destination. The authorities should end it.”

Here, 16% of Thais, 10% of expats and 16% of tourists were in agreement.

Finally, the least popular of the options was: “Buying sex is wrong. The authorities should put a stop to it,” which was supported by 11.4% of readers overall.

But while just 6% of expats and 13% of tourists agreed with this, almost a third (31%) of the Thais did.

Frank Peterson, a Phuket-based reader, agreed that the sex industry was bad for the ‘family’ tourism market.

“I am not opposed to the sex industry, but feel uncomfortable when it is too close to the ‘straight’ holiday market,” he wrote.

His solution would be to move the island’s entire sex industry into Phuket City.

“Phuket City would benefit because it would be busy at night,” he wrote. “Only the property owners on Bangla Road would reject it out of hand…”

Writing from Las Vegas, reader Buzz Thurber commented: “The exchange of money for sexual activity which transpires in Patong should be more fondly referred to as a financial exchange for a fun and romantic time.”

“I would feel cheated if the laws regarding prostitution were strictly enforced in Phuket,” he wrote.

The Gazette‘s new poll, placed on line this morning, notes that Phuket has spent 40 million baht to study the feasibility of building a tunnel under the mountain between Phuket Town and Patong. It asks whether the cost, estimated at up to 2.5 billion baht, is worth the benefits. To vote, click here.

— Phuket Gazette Poll

 

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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