Support Councils' rights to ban private areas in Strip Clubs
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Support Councils’ Right to ban ‘private areas’ in Strip Clubs
Red Rooms strip club, in the London borough of Camden plans to install a floor of private booths in its venue at Great Queen St, Holborn. Private booths allow ‘one on one’ interaction between customer and dancer which greatly increases the risks of exploitation of performers and gives the green light to punters seeking sexual services.
Camden has a ban on private areas, like many other councils and is going to Court (scheduled for Feb 2018) to ensure Red Rooms cannot use private areas’
The Council currently operates a ‘Zero ‘ policy and introducing private areas would seriously undermine this policy. If this club succeeds private areas are more likely to be rolled out in strip clubs nationwide.
There is already overwhelming evidence of contact including sexual, physical and verbal assault, other breaches of contract and harm suffered by dancers in strip clubs, industry wide.
“ The 3 ft rule is a joke. You pay someone to get naked and then grind away on your crotch” 1
“A lot of the men are totally blunt- how much for a blowjob” 2
“The clubs operate a veneer of ‘no touching’, but the reality is touching is more standard than not” 3
50% of lap dancers in a large study reported frequent verbal harassment and unwanted touching from customers. 4
50% of men interviewed for a Glasgow study admitted visiting strip clubs looking for sex and 25% said they had had sex with dancers on the premises. 5*
Strip Clubs : Link to Violence Against Women.
Researchers also found increased levels of harassment of women and fear of violence in areas local to strip clubs. 6
This harassment and fear of assault has been reported numerous times and is even recognised by the Town Planning and legal experts as a ground for refusing strip club licenses .7, 8
Based on all of the above findings, as well as the drive to maximise profit, it is self - evident why a strip club venue wants local authorities to legalise private areas, currently prohibited by licensing conditions governing the sale of sex in clubs nationwide.
We Call On
Camden Council Sexual Entertainment Licensing Committee :
· To draft more robust licensing conditions which will ensure continued prohibition of private areas in strip clubs, as well as to clarify the binding nature of Council licensing conditions
· To shut down Red Rooms if it continues to operate private areas if the Council’s court case is successful
· To take measures to ensure that every future planning application is rigorously subjected to a proper Public Sector Equality Duty Impact assessment.
· To take measures to ensure future planning applications are compliant with Camden Council Community Cohesion and Safety vision and commitments.
· To make sure their Licensing Policy that states that Zero Strip clubs are appropriate in the borough is finally applied and that all 6 clubs that are still operating in the borough are shut
That they take measures to ensure that Public Sector Equality Duty impacts are rigorously assessed and upheld with regard to all borough activities.
1, 2, 3. Object : Testimonies from Performers :http://www.notbuyingit.org.uk/publications
4. Teela Sanders et al, http://www.sociology Leeds.ac.uk/assets/files/research/Regulatory _Dance/FINALSUMMARYJAN2012.pdf
5. Julie Bindel : Profitable Exploits http://www.glasgow.gov.uk/CHttpHandler.ashx?id=8107&
6. Eaves (2003) (Lap Dancing and Striptease in the Borough of Camden”)
7 Royal Town Planning Institute ‘Gender and Spatial Planning Good Practice’ Note, 2010, p. 87
8 Jackie Patiniotis & Kay Standing (2012) License to cause harm? Sex entertainment venues and women’s sense of safety in inner city centres. Criminal Justice Matters 88:1, 10-12.
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www.notbuyingit.org.uk , email: email@example.com
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