Is it illegal to visit prostitutes in Singapore?

Last updated on May 4, 2011

It is not illegal to be a prostitute in Singapore. Neither is it illegal to visit one. However, many activities related to prostitution are illegal. For example, persistent soliciting by prostitutes is prohibited under section 19 of the Miscellaneous Offences (Public Order and Nuisance) Act.

Managing a brothel is one of the many illegal acts related to prostitution, together with living on the earnings of the prostitution of another person, commonly known as pimping. These illegal acts and others related to prostitution are mostly documented in Part XI of the Women’s Charter.

Some publications have claimed that in reality, brothels are allowed to operate in certain red-light districts, provided the brothel owners observe a number of conditions, such as ensuring that the prostitutes are free of sexually transmitted diseases, and that the prostitutes are working out of their own volition. Prostitutes can only work in the brothels when they are medically registered and given a medical card.

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