German brothel gives discounts to unemployed
26 May 2005
DRESDEN – Saying times are hard enough without men having to give up sex, a brothel madam in economically hard-hit eastern Germany is offering a 20-percent discount to the unemployed.
To qualify for the discount – which applies to snacks and beverages as well as services rendered – the patrons of the Villa Bijou club in Dresden must produce unemployment registration papers showing they have been out of work for at least two years.
“Unemployment is nearly 20 percent in the Dresden area,” club owner Silvia Rau told a local newspaper. “It’s demoralising to go job-hunting all day with no hope of relief. Men need relief from their cares, and I’m here to help see that they get it, even when they are hard-up for cash. Especially, when they are hard-up.”
Claiming the sex trade is a good economic barometer, Rau said business has gone slack at her Dresden club, with attendance plunging from about 150 guests a week a year ago to around 80 per week now.
Because her employees get a commission for every customer, they took matters into their own hands to come up with a way to buck up revenues.
“They actually approached me with the idea, and I thought it was terrific,” Rau was quoted as saying. “Many of them have also had a hard row to hoe in life, so they want to welcome these guys with open arms.”
Despite the fact that patrons will be required to present documents bearing their names and jobless status, Rau stressed that all information will be kept confidential.
“In my business, you’re either discreet or you’re out of business in no time,” she said. “All I want is a piece of paper showing the guy has hit rock bottom and needs a helping hand. He’ll get the same quality attention that a full-paying club member gets, and no questions asked.”
Noting that Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder’s coalition of Greens and Social Democrats will likely be thrown out of power in an upcoming general election, she said anyone, no matter what line of work, is eligible for the discount.
“Politicians are very welcome,” Rau said, adding, “In fact, politicians usually feel right at home in our club.”
Subject: German news