Birmingham & Black Country

Sex workers 'need more support'

Manor Women's Project in Walsall Image copyright Manor Women's Project
Image caption The home and drug rehabilitation centre has places for 15 women

Women sex workers need more help to get off the streets, the co-founder of a West Midlands women's project has said.

Robert Gregory, from the Manor Women's Project in Walsall, said a crackdown on prostitution in Wolverhampton would just move the problem to a "different area".

He said the 12-year-old Walsall project worked because the women had to abstain from drugs and helped each other.

He said he hoped similar projects would be set up in the area and nationally.

Over the past few weeks, neighbourhood policing teams have increased patrols in the Whitmore Reans area of Wolverhampton as part of a crackdown targeting sex workers and kerb crawlers, prompting Mr Gregory's comments.

'Genuine help needed'

West Midlands Police said sex workers in the area had become "a priority for the neighbourhood to deal with".

A spokesperson said officers would issue warnings to suspected prostitutes before it could "proactively remove them from [the area]" and put them in contact with the correct support agencies.

The force said it had handed out six street cautions so far to sex workers and one for kerb crawling.

Mr Gregory ran a homeless hostel for 20 years before turning it into the drug rehabilitation centre and home for 15 women.

The women stay at the centre for about three years and are offered counselling if needed. They are also tested for drugs two or three times a week.

"There need to be places that get stuck in and that get their sleeves rolled up and genuinely help these girls," he said.

Related Topics

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites