In 2004, 64% of the voters in Berkeley rejected a proposal for decriminalization of prostitution that was similar to Prop K. This was an overwhelming mandate in one of the most progressive communities in the United States.
The Berkeley City Manager was asked by the Berkeley Mayor and City Council to assess the likely impact of decriminalization of prostitution on the city of Berkeley. He stated that decriminalized prostitution would result in that city’s becoming the Bay Area prostitution destination point, attracting johns and pimps and the women they sell.
He stated that decriminalization would significantly increase the cost of law enforcement and would also result in an increase in the numbers of crimes of sexual assault, battery, and robbery.
He stated that the exploitation of women and children, especially teenage prostitutes, would likely increase in Berkeley as a result of decriminalization.
The City Manager stated that medical providers would see an increase in STDs, especially in vulnerable groups of people with HIV, hepatitis, tuberculosis and other communicable diseases.
He predicted an increase in prostitution of children as a result of decriminalization. Research data from Netherlands, New Zealand, and Australia supports this trend.
Organized crime spirals out of control when prostitution is either legalized or decriminalized.
Read the Berkeley City Manager's full report (pdf).