MP wants progress report on prostitution bill

JAMES IRELAND
Last updated 10:22 31/07/2014

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It's been nine years but there's still a long road ahead to get street prostitution regulations in place for South Auckland.

Labour's Manukau East MP Ross Robertson wants the Local Government and Environment Select Committee to issue an interim report on the progress of the prostitution bill he sponsored through Parliament.

The Manukau City Council (Regulation of Prostitution in Specified Places) Bill would let Auckland Council make a bylaw banning street prostitution in specified areas.

Prostitution in a brothel would still be allowed in those areas.

Robertson wants the committee's report released before the election.

"We are dealing with a long-standing issue and as the local MP I have been working with the Auckland Council, the Prostitutes Collective, the Manukau police and the local boards.

"We have all signed off on the legislation and all it needs is for the select committee to agree."

The bill was first introduced to Parliament on August 20, 2010 and saw one reading a month later.

It had to be amended after the super-city amalgamation, to remove Manukau City Council and replace it with Auckland Council.

An earlier bill introduced in 2005 failed to pass through the select committee stage.

Robertson raised the issue of an interim report with the committee's chairwoman MP Maggie Barry during question time on July 24.

She says the matter was discussed and voted on that afternoon and there will not be an interim report.

But Robertson expected to put a motion to the committee this week calling for an interim report to be released.

"The Greens and New Zealand First have indicated they will support the motion so if the National Party also supports it, an interim report will be made so the community can be informed of the select committee's progress on the bill."

Robertson is retiring from Parliament this year and when it resumes the bill will be reinstated by Mangere MP Su'a William Sio.

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- Manukau Courier

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