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A report on the inquiry into UK prostitution says the Ipswich strategy has 'been successful in eliminating street prostitution and kerb-crawlers'.
Ipswich's approach to reducing street prostitution and protecting women who sell sex has been more successful than Leeds' controversial Managed Approach, according to the findings of an inquiry. A report on the inquiry into UK prostitution, conducted by Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, says the Leeds scheme appears to have made prostitutes more willing get help from outreach workers and report crimes to the police.
However, it says sex workers don't feel much safer on the streets of Holbeck since the scheme was launched, and there are still issues with women being sexually assaulted and working outside the designated zone. The report also states that 'in contrast' Ipswich's strategy has 'been successful in eliminating street prostitution and kerb-crawlers', helped women move away from prostitution and prevented others from taking up the profession. The conclusion of the inquiry, entitled 'The Limits of Consent: Prostitution in the UK' , was that punishments for prostitution should be relaxed and prostitution related offences should be 'expunged from criminal records'.
It also found that the system of prostitution 'is intimately connected to sexual exploitation, sexual violence, violent crime and other crime, and that people are harmed through it'. However, the inquiry has been criticised for failing to thoroughly investigate the relationship between austerity, poverty and prostitution. Leeds City Council and West Yorkshire Police teamed up in to launch the Managed Approach, which allows sex workers to ply their trade between 8pm and 6am in an area of Holbeck , without fear of prosecution.
The women can also get support and advice from outreach workers at Basis Yorkshire and the drug and alcohol service Forward Leeds. The scheme set out to protect sex workers and encourage them to report crimes, but also reduce street prostitution and its impact on the area. Suffolk Constabulary decided to crack down on the men who were buying sex, instead of the women who were selling it. The force also worked with people from other organisations, including social workers and health professionals, to help women exit prostitution and prevent vulnerable youngsters in care homes and troubled households from being drawn towards the inherently dangerous profession.