28 Mar 2012

Fears bill will compromise safety of sex workers

9:17 am on 28 March 2012

The Aids Foundation says a bill that would outlaw street prostitution in Auckland will compromise the safety of sex workers.

About 200 submissions have been received on the Regulation of Prostitution in Specified Places Bill as the legislation goes through Parliament's select committee process.

The legislation would allow the Auckland Council to decide where prostitutes can work.

In its submission the Aids Foundation, which opposes the bill, says this could force prostitutes off the street.

It says trade could be driven underground, which in other countries has seen rises in cases of HIV and other sexually-transmitted infections.

But many submitters support the bill, including South Auckland businesses represented by the Hunters Corner Town Centre Society, which says prostitutes are degrading the area.

The select committee is due to report back to Parliament on 31July.