Sport and Prostitution: Enough is Enough! (June 2010)

EWL statement on the World Cup June 2010

It is World Cup time once again, and already the media attention devoted to the competition and its surroundings has been huge, including regarding how to entertain male fans and athletes outside of the stadiums. Estimates have circulated about how many brothels were being set up near stadiums, how many prostitutes were ’mobilised’ within the host country or coming/being brought in for the event, exactly how many condoms were being stockpiled and distributed, etc. For the European Women’s Lobby (EWL), the way that the media consistently links international sporting events with prostitution leaves no choice but to believe that sports are considered to be all about men and catering to their needs, including supplying women for sex. Do we really believe nowadays that men cannot survive a few weeks away from home without sex? Let’s inverse the media trends and think about the World Cup differently for a change: we know that the event will bring thousands of men to South Africa; what do politicians plan to do to ensure that women there (including prostituted women) will not become victims of male violence?

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