Code aims for safer brothels.
Code aims for safer brothels.

Brothel policy angers alliance

THE sex workers’ union, the Scarlet Alliance, is seeing red over Tweed Shire Council’s proposed brothels policy, especially restrictions which would limit business to night hours.

The alliance claims sex workers with families need to work nine to five and the night-time working hours along with other rules pushing brothels into industrial areas threaten the safety of the workers.

In January, the council released its draft brothel code and called for public submissions by March 16.

The proposed code would limit brothel hours to between 6pm and 6am and ensure they were not near homes, schools, churches, pubs, clubs and sporting fields.

Scarlet Alliance chief executive officer Janelle Fawkes yesterday said her organisation, which represents sex workers across Australia, was lodging a submission against major parts of the plan, although it supported objectives such as making brothels safer places for the sex workers.

She said some of the proposal controls would make the objectives unachievable.

“The limitation of the location to only industrial areas does raise key safety concerns for both the sex workers and also clients,” she said.

“A lot of workers are mums trying to work within school hours, or who have a family and are wanting to choose, like the rest of us do, a nine-to-five work lifestyle.”

Ms Fawkes said the rules would severely limit the ability of brothels in the Tweed to attract and retain staff.

She said the alliance also objected to a rule that would review development approval for brothels after 12 months.

“We see that as not being sustainable, not a viable business approach for people who put substantial amounts of money into setting up a business,” she said.

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