Stuff co.nz 14 July 2015
A woman living in a unit adjoining a brothel is calling for a rule change.
The Mt Eden resident, 46, who spoke on condition of anonymity, lives in one of three units adjoining a brothel.
“I can hear the door going at hours and I can hear giggles, you name it,” she says.
She says her neighbour’s 12-year-old daughter shares a bedroom wall with one of the brothel’s rooms.
Clients sometimes knock on the family’s front door by mistake, she says.
The landlord applied to end the occupant’s tenancy in early June but was refused by the tenancy tribunal as the business does not breach any law or bylaw.
There was also not enough evidence to prove the business was carried out in a way that disturbed the neighbours’ “peace, comfort and privacy”.
The neighbour complained to Mt Roskill Labour MP Phil Goff, who wrote a letter to Auckland Mayor Len Brown on her behalf.
Goff says he has referred the case to the Minister of Justice to encourage her to consider amending the law.
“I believe that there is a case for government to review the current law to tighten restrictions on the operation of brothels where these unreasonably affect the quality of life of neighbouring residents,” he says.
The neighbour has contacted politicians asking them to push for an urgent bylaw that stops brothels and massage parlours operating in units, townhouses and apartments.
“What’s really disturbing about the the way the prostitution law is at the moment is that it looks like you can set these up anywhere you like,” she says.
“The minimum requirement should be that you don’t have to share a wall.”
Auckland Councillor Christine Fletcher agrees that something has to change.
“I am not being unrealistic or prudish but it is totally unacceptable to me that we have brothels in residential communities,” she says.