For the first time in the pandemic, brothels are officially open in Nevada

nevada brothel to reopen soon
Photo via el-toro/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

In a sign that life in America is returning to some sort of normalcy since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020, Nevada brothels will open following a lengthy, year-plus pause in operations. 

As USA Today reported, brothels across Nevada will reopen for business on May 8 for the first time in more than a year. Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak has gone on record saying he “expects all businesses to be reopened at 100% capacity by June 1, with COVID containment responsibilities falling to local health officials beginning May 1.”

That, of course, includes Las Vegas. Yet, the statewide mask mandate will continue.

“Legal sex workers returning to the workplace are adjusting to new COVID-19 safety measures, such as masks and temperature checks,” the Reno Gazette-Journal added in its reporting, “Hoping to encourage clients to return, some sex workers are also offering deals on their services.” 

Kiki Lover, a sex worker who identified herself by her stage name, noted that she’ll be offering first-week discounts for her services when Sagebrush Ranch, a Nevada brothel located east of Carson City, opens. “I want to get people to visit so there will be a discount for my services for the first week,” she said. “I’m so excited to get back to work and want people to be excited about returning too.”

She added that the sex workers at the brothels should be able to comply with COVID-19 guidelines, which include wearing masks at all times except when taking clients into their private rooms.

“We have to wear masks when we’re in the parlor,” Lover said. “We have to wear masks when the customer comes in. They have to get their temperature checked and stuff like that.” 

She added, “Wearing a mask in our room is up to the individual lady because there are a few things we can’t do with a mask on.”

“I’m really excited,” said another sex worker, Alice Little, to the Nevada Independent. “It’s well overdue. I’m so eager to be back in that space, to be able to see people again.”

“Many sex workers have struggled to support themselves throughout this situation and to be able to get back to the careers that we know and love,” she added. “It feels really good.” 

Fox News noted that Little had protested the closure of brothels in 2020 when other businesses were allowed to open over the summer. She even sued Sisolak over the issue, though the lawsuit was dismissed.

USA Today, also reporting on Little’s journey through the pandemic year, noted that she began using online platforms such as OnlyFans and Patreon to continue her work, but it wasn’t as lucrative. 

“Unfortunately, the reality is that online services don’t make up quite the difference that brothel work would,” she said. “Ladies should really have the option to do both in being on OnlyFans and working in brothels.” 

She noted that the closures had a significant economic impact on rural counties, reliant in large part on the business that the brothels bring. (According to state law, prostitution is not legal in counties that have more than 700,000 residents.) 

Lyon County commissioners decided that under its Restore Lyon County Plan, which went into effect, all businesses not designated by a state regulatory board would be allowed to operate at full capacity. Large gatherings, be they indoor or outdoor, are also allowed. 

Read more coronavirus travel news:

Sources: USA Today, Reno Gazette-Journal, Fox News

Continue Learning