Redbridge Council call for more resources after Ilford Lane prostitutes keep coming back
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Redbridge Council is calling on the police to end the “cycle of prostitution” on Ilford Lane.
Councillor Kam Rai, deputy leader, said when the successful police operations end, street workers simply come back - especially when neighbouring boroughs start their own initiatives.
He is calling for a joint approach to tackle prostitution across all east London boroughs at the same time.
“At the moment we have police officers patrolling Ilford Lane every night” he said.
“Residents walking out with their families shouldn’t have put up with being accosted and feel unsafe, and it is unacceptable.”
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“Instead of a Redbridge focused operation, we need a joint approach.”
Cllr Rai said the Council is writing to the Metropolitan Police to better resource Redbridge Police and is asking for the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan’s, support for a more flexible approach and a better strategy.
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“We also need to be honest about the people using the prostitutes,” he added.
“They are not coming from a million miles away and our residents should not be using vulnerable women and feeding the demand.”
Last weekend, police officers made two arrests in Ilford Lane and issued a 48-hour dispersal order against 24 individuals in the area.
As well as extra night police patrols over the weekend, tactics including additional enforcement officers, improved lighting, gating alleyways and installing CCTV is being undertaken.
Council leader, Councillor Jas Athwal said the local authority is trying to get tough on crime and create a “ring of steel” around the borough to protect residents and make Redbridge a better place to live.
“We want to clean up Ilford Lane for good and we are working closely with the police and our partner organisation to put a stop to the illegal activity in the area,” he said.
“Through improved lighting, additional enforcement officer and police patrols we can disrupt and put a stop to it.”
Redbridge council previously consulted with residents on proposals for a PSPO (Public Space Protection Order) which included on the spot fines for attempting to procure the services of sex workers or harassing people on Ilford Lane and the surrounding area.
The PSPO is likely to go live before the end of August 2018.