Prostitution

Home Office written question – answered on 2nd March 2017.

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Photo of Brandon Lewis Brandon Lewis Minister of State (Home Office) (Policing and the Fire Service)

Local police forces are in the best position to identify and respond to issues around prostitution and sex work in their area, including ‘pop-up’ brothels. Forces are supported by clear operational guidance for policing prostitution and sexual exploitation. The guidance is clear that where indoor premises are identified, the safety and welfare of those working in brothels, investigation of coercion and exploitation, and reducing the impact to local communities must all be taken into account.

It is illegal to keep a brothel, or to allow premises to be used as one. The law does not distinguish between types of brothel, and we will continue to ensure that police forces have the powers they need to identify and close down these brothels. Prosecutions for brothel keeping offences have risen, from 99 in 2014-15 to 111 in 2015-16.

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