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The Effect of the Sex Buyer Law on the Market for Sex, Sexual Health and Sexual Violence

Peter Backus and Thien Nguyen

Economics Discussion Paper Series from Economics, The University of Manchester

Abstract: We evaluate the effect of the 2015 criminalization of the purchasing of sexual services in Northern Ireland on the market of such services, sexually transmitted infections and sexual violence. This sub-national change in sex market regulation gives us an opportunity to estimate the causal effects of this new law which has become increasingly popular with policymakers over the last 20 years. Based on newly constructed data sets, our results indicate that the law reduced, temporarily, the size of the market for sexual services and fees for sexual services, lowered sexually transmitted infection rates among women and increased sexual violence committed against women. These results are largely consistent with recent evidence on the effects of different kinds of sex market regulation.

Date: 2021-08
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hea, nep-isf and nep-law
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