According to the government, between 7,000 and 10,000 minors are today involved in prostitution in France. On the occasion of the day against violence against women this Thursday, November 25, Seine-Saint-Denis announces that it is strengthening its resources to fight this form of sexual violence and presents a report on the disastrous consequences of prostitution on young girls.
The Observatory of Violence Against Women of Seine-Saint-Denis has in fact studied the files of 101 minors (99 girls and 2 boys) from the department who have been or are still supported by Social Assistance to the childhood, in which acts of prostitution were identified.
“Prostitution is not a matter of sexuality but constitutes violence against the victims, which takes multiple forms and is heightened by the vulnerability of children and adolescent girls. It does not result from an enlightened choice that would be freed from all the domination relations that cross society: the prostitution system combines relations of sex, origin and class ”, indicate the experts who have studied these files.
Their analyzes highlight the violence suffered from an early age. In fact, 99% of minors followed have suffered violence before entering prostitution. These first traumas took place between 1 year and 17 years old, and the median age of this first violence is 12 years old. “7 out of 10 girls have suffered sexual violence before prostitution. In 8 out of 10 cases, it was rape or attempted rape, ”says the report.
Consequences on health and education
Out of all the cases studied, the first acts of prostitution took place between 11 and 17 years old, with a median age of 15 years. “4 minors out of 10 do not realize that they have been subjected to acts of prostitution”, underlines the Observatory of Seine-Saint-Denis, and for 9 minors out of 10, one or more pimps have been spotted. In addition, “for 1 minor victim of procuring in 4, it is the one she perceived as her boyfriend who prostituted her.”
Facts of sexual violence which can have serious consequences on the education and health of these young girls. 96% of minors studied indicated having a bad relationship with school, and 6 out of 10 girls are or have been out of school before or at the time of entering prostitution. “9 out of 10 minors are in poor health, before or after prostitution, whether the health problems are physical or psychological (sexually transmitted infections, post-traumatic stress disorders such as eating disorders or severe anxiety attacks. .) ”, Explains the Observatory of violence against women of Seine-Saint-Denis, which also indicated that a majority of these minors regularly consume alcohol or drugs.
A plan of 2.3 million euros
“While the crisis and the successive confinements have seen the number of young girls victims of violence increase, we are acting to continue to bring our public action up to the challenges”, declared Stéphane Troussel, President of the Department of Seine-Saint -Denis in a press release.
It will probably still not be enough, but with the Department of @beesaintdenis We continue to increase our efforts, with our Departmental Observatory of Violence Against Women, created in 2002 (9/10)
– Stéphane Troussel (@StephanTroussel) November 23, 2021
Faced with these findings, he presented an action plan of 2.3 million euros for the year 2022. Objectives: strengthen prevention of the risks of prostitution in schools and within families; open reception areas for victims and in particular psycho-trauma treatment consultations; train the professionals who welcome these minor victims; create a hotline against violence for deaf and hard of hearing women. In addition, as of Thursday, November 25, 40,000 “violentometers”, which allow to measure the degree of violence within a couple and which gives the emergency numbers, will be distributed in the department in the form of packaging of chopsticks or bread bags.
On November 15, the government also launched a plan to fight against child prostitution at the national level which is based on raising awareness, improving the identification and support of minors in prostitution.