[Hungary] Girl becomes prostitute at 13, is fined by court at 15

05 Sep 2017

The daily online paper Index published the article of Veronika Munk who writes the story of a 15-year-old girl. The story exemplifies what the Hungarian justice system does to children sexually exploited, how they are seen as perpetrators, rather than providing them with protection. (The girl moves to the city with her family at the age of 10, but having no housing, the children are placed in care homes. In the care home she meets another girl who is already selling herself on the street....Police stops her several times, and because she is prostituting herself at places where this is illegal, she is taken into custody and fined. When she is in front of the judge, the judge fails to recognise that the girl is a victim, someone who cannot "choose" to prostitute herself.) 

As Viki Sebhelyi points out, Hungarian law treats these children as perpetrators, and as such is in violation of the UNCRC and the Lanzarote Convention, as well as the European Directive on Human Trafficking.

The article itself is a bit problematic, in that the author does not realise that a child cannot choose to become a prostitute, that "lack of money" is not the responsibility of a child, but of the family and of the social welfare system. 


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