ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A north St. Louis alderman has been gathering feedback on a proposal to legalize prostitution.

“I don’t think St. Louis is ready for brothels. I’m certainly not interested in having brothels,” says Ward 22 Alderman Jeffery Boyd.

Boyd stresses that the return of brothels to St. Louis wasn’t his idea but when a constituent mentioned the idea a couple weeks ago, he felt the need to hear further feedback.

“She proposed legalizing prostitution, having brothels. Again, she was very sincere,” Boyd says. “Here’s what her issue was: she’s concerned about the young ladies out here putting themselves in harms way.”

The alderman says the idea isn’t gaining any traction around his ward. He calls prostitution a city-wide problem and would like to see more churches and social service agencies help prostitutes escape from that lifestyle.

“It’s an ugly problem, literally and figuratively,” Boyd added. “It’s an ugly problem in our community. People are tired of it.”

Prostitution was last legalized in St. Louis between 1870 and 1874. The ordinance passed by the city council in 1870 allowed prostitution within brothels and required the brothels to obtain a license from the city. The law was repealed four years later under pressure from religious leaders.


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