Brothels urged to move

North Shore Times 20/08/2009

Brothel owners setting up shop in residential Shore suburbs are being convinced to move to industrial locations. A lack of power to deal with the problem has forced the council to “think outside the square”, says environmental protection team leader Warwick Robertson. A brothel must have a major impact on the surrounding neighbourhood before the courts will uphold a prosecution under any council’s brothel bylaw, he says. High Court and Appeal Court challenges have knocked back other councils’ attempts to prosecute.

One of the ways North Shore deals with the problem is to persuade brothel owners to move to an industrial area. The council also involves Inland Revenue, police, and immigration and health officials if needed, Mr Robertson says. The Tenancy Tribunal has also been involved where a lease didn’t allow a business to operate from the property. In the past the council has had up to 10 brothels in residential areas creating problems, now it is dealing with about two, he says. Most problems involve cut-price Chinese brothels, he says.