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Christchurch Council have it wrong on brothels

Gordon Copeland Press Release
For Immediate Release
Monday, 11th August 2008

Christchurch City Council have it wrong on brothels

Independent MP and Kiwi Party candidate, Gordon Copeland, today strongly criticised the plans of the Christchurch City Council to drop brothel bylaws.

“Comments by the Council staff on this issue are misinformed,” said Mr Copeland.

“It is true that the High Court ruled in 2004 that the Christchurch City Council’s bylaws need to be changed. However that was principally because the Council had failed to distinguish correctly between small owner-operated brothels (SOOBs), i.e. premises where up to 4 self employed prostitutes work together, and full fledged brothel operations where the prostitutes are employees.”

“The Court ruled that although Christchurch City Council can control the location of full fledge brothels, they must do it in a way which enables SOOBs to operate from residential premises.”

“That important distinction is at the heart of the matter and is the reason why the High Court and the Court of Appeal have upheld the bylaws put in place by the Hamilton City Council.”

“In Hamilton, SOOBs are permitted in residences which are in close proximity to commercial areas of the city, whereas in Christchurch they have essentially been prohibited from all residential areas. Accordingly, if the Christchurch City Council followed the guidance now provided by the Court of Appeal in the Hamilton case, their bylaws will be consistent with the current law.”

Mr Copeland emphasised that it is Kiwi Party policy to repeal the Prostitution Law Reform Act by criminalising the buying of sex on the streets.

ENDS

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