Sex workers charity slams saunas axe

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An Edinburgh-based charity that helps sex workers has said a move to suspend the licences of six saunas in the Capital was “an extremely dangerous” departure from long established arrangements.

It has warned that if allegations of prostitution in some establishments, which have had operating licences suspended, are true, closing them will put sex workers at risk as they will be removed from a “safe environment”.

Scot-Pep said it would call for talks with the city council and police after a push against claims of so-called accepted prostitution, with raids on alleged brothels involving 150 officers across the city.

The charity said in a statement on its website: “Scot-Pep will be making strong representations to both the council and the police. If the information being reported by the press is true then this would appear to conflict with previous assurances issued by Police Scotland and would indicate a significant change in Edinburgh policy towards saunas.”