Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV)

 

Victoria currently has a licensing/legalisation system of sex work laws. Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV) is responsible for licensing sex industry business operators, as well as registering individual sex workers.

CAV licenses a wide range of businesses; from caravan parks to retirement villages. CAV:

Source: Consumer Affairs Victoria
Source: Consumer Affairs Victoria

Notes on Data

1. The figures above do NOT reflect the number of licensed brothels and escort agencies in Victoria. There may be more than one owner per brothel/escort agency. In 2018, there were 88 licensed brothels and 22 licensed escort agencies.

2. Consumer Affairs Victoria refers to licensed brothel/escort agency owners as ‘sex industry business owners (licensees)’

3. The graph above excludes unlicensed brothel and unlicensed escort agency owners

Source: Consumer Affairs Victoria

Notes on Data

1. These figures do NOT reflect the number of licensed brothels and escort agencies in Victoria. There may be more than one manager per brothel/escort agency. In 2018, there were 88 licensed brothels and 22 licensed escort agencies.

2. The graph above excludes unlicensed brothel and unlicensed escort agency managers.

Possible reasons for the decline in the number of licensed managers and owners:

  • competition from the proliferation of unlicensed (illegal) brothels
  • competition due to the sex working population increasingly becoming self-employed  ie. moving from brothels/escort agencies/street sectors to self-employed (private) sex work
Source: Consumer Affairs Victoria

Notes on Data

The graph above excludes the estimated 4000 unregistered private (self-employed) sex workers.

These graphs illustrate that the sex industry is changing and that legislation has failed to keep pace. The last inquiry into the regulation of the Victorian sex industry was in 1985.

Victoria’s Licensing Model is NOT Smart Regulation

Licensing individual sex workers and sex industry businesses may seem to be a sensible way to regulate the sex industry, however, Victoria’s unique licensing system places unworkable restrictions on sex workers, forcing the majority to operate outside the law. This demonstrates that the legislation fails in its aim of controlling sex work.¹

 

Last updated: 18 May 2019