Times Up for Strip Clubs

MPs, Local Councils, the Government

Petition by
sasha rakoff
London, United Kingdom

To: MPs, Local Councils, the Government
From: [Your Name]

Strip Clubs are simply 'brothels light', they cannot be regulated, women cannot be protected and they perpetuate 'President Club' attitudes.

Recent independent investigations show men are buying foreplay in Manchester's Strip Clubs and women to have sex with each other at Sheffield's. Sexual contact is standard even in the most regulated club in the country - Spearmint Rhino, Camden - despite 63 CCTV cameras.

This simply confirms what has already been recorded over years in at least 70 strip clubs across the UK (1/3 of the entire strip industry). Harassment and even assault is the norm. As are drugs and dealing. Pimps frequent clubs or tout outside. The entire industry is nothing more than a feeder for local brothels and all the associated crime and exploitation that that entails.

This is happening despite 'stringent regulation' by Councils including 'secret' spot checks, banks of CCTV cameras and even 'panic buttons'. Despite statements from everyone in the industry that 'it is happy family', 'a safe environment' and 'the rules are never broken'. The industry cannot be controlled and needs to end.

We call on:

1. Sheffield/Manchester/ Camden Councils:
Close down their strip clubs immediately, support performers out and introduce a policy for zero strip clubs.

2. Our MPs:
Push for law change to end the strip trade, as already enacted in Iceland and Israel.

3. Local Councils:
Stop licensing strip clubs. Provide exit support to the women working in them - women they are directly responsible for being sexually exploited.

Local Councils are also at risk of legal challenge, as one Council has already experienced, for breaching both licensing and equality law by licensing and re-licensing the strip trade.

4. The Home Office:
Issue new guidance immediately advising Councils to stop licensing the industry and support lap dancers out. This is because It cannot be regulated, is linked to high levels of abuse of women inside and in their vicinity and feeds 'Harvey Weinstein' attitudes - making a mockery of saying 'Times Up' to the routine harassment, abuse and assault of women in wider society.

Longer term, legislation is required to finally say 'Times Up' to the strip trade