30 years ago marked the death of Nicolae Ceausescu who was a communist dictator in Romania, he was shot to death alongside his wife after a hastily concluded trial where he was accused of illegally acquiring wealth and genocide. The Romanian revolution that was the cause of this was finally free of communist rule after 42 years.
Since that time Romania has been trying to catch up with the rest of Europe in terms of modernization and bettering their economy but after being under bad communist control for so long and having so little time to adapt, poverty is a nearly insurmountable problem in the country and this had led to a rise in young women leaving or being forced to leave to try and find a better life in places such as Germany, Italy and England, to become sex workers.
Prostitution itself is not illegal in Romania but openly soliciting and providing for it, for example being a ‘pimp’ or ‘madam’ which is known as procuring, is punishable by law. Because of the poverty however, most of the women who have entered the world of sex work have spread out to other countries to make money. Romania is one of the top five countries in the EU that victims of human trafficking are from and approximately one third of these are underage.
With the rise in Romanian sex workers around the world, it is already being reflected in search bar results that men, looking to hire escorts are opting to meet with them instead of a local girl who can get away with charging more money because she does come from the poverty that has afflicted her Romanian counterparts.
While the Romanian government has pledged to put an end to the disturbing amount of trafficking going on there really has not been as much improvement as hoped and some reports state that there is even local police interference when it comes to bringing a case to trial, Perhaps because of bribery from the traffickers themselves. The Trafficking in Persons Report, or the TIP Report, which is a yearly report from the US state department’s office rates Romania as a ‘Tier 2’ country which according to the ranking system means: “countries whose governments do not fully comply with an TVPA’s minimum standards, but are making significant efforts to bring themselves into compliance with those standards.”
While sex work entered into willingly is not a concern, the plight of these women forced into it to survive is.