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Dana Levy is an Israeli survivor of the sex industry and campaigner for the Nordic Model in Israel, where a Nordic Model-style law has recently been passed. In this article, she reflects on the tenth anniversary of the passing of the Nordic Model legislation in Norway and the work that is still ahead. The Norwegian feminist community is celebrating the 10 th anniversary of the introduction of its Sex Purchase Act in Norway was the second country in the world to adopt the Nordic Model approach to prostitution.
For many Norwegians, the law aims to achieve three main goals, the first of which is changing the public perception of sex. Money has substantial power in our world — the power to separate the hungry from the fed. The second goal is to minimize the Norwegian sex industry by limiting demand. The third goal is to weaponize the battle against human trafficking.
As one of the richest countries in Europe, Norway was a desirable destination for human traffickers, with prostitution as their core objective. The financial and political crises resulting from the fall of the Soviet Union and the financial collapse in south-east Asia in the s, largely skipped Norway, making it an even more desirable destination. A law aimed at minimizing the sex industry had been discussed periodically in Norway since , while the feminist movement started campaigning for criminalizing the purchase of sexual services even earlier.
The journey to a resolution was long and different legislative options were considered. In , Sweden was the first country to adopt what has come to be known as the Nordic Model approach to prostitution.
A couple of years later, in , another European country, the Netherlands, enacted the Legalization Model, which legitimizes brothel owners. Norway, meanwhile, stood on the side-lines and watched developments in both countries. In , reality began to dictate the need for new legislation. The global crisis in the financial markets that started in the US in , hit European countries unevenly and resulted in changes to the established human trafficking routes.