• Sat. May 14th, 2022

Southampton sex worker support group set to pick up litter after complaints

ByJulie J. Helfer

Mar 26, 2022

A GROUP offering support to sex workers in Southampton is set to pick up litter in a creepy spot after complaints.

It comes after parents whose children attend Mount Pleasant Junior School raised concerns about condoms and unsanitary litter on Imperial Road and Empress Road.

Amber, a chaplaincy service of City Life Church, provides outreach services in the area twice a week to women involved in selling sex on the street.

READ MORE: Concerns over number of ‘used condoms and needles’ left outside town’s primary school

Nicky Porter, Senior Chaplain, said: “Our team offers a listening ear, emotional support, referral to services and prayer.

“In relation to the issues raised, we have agreed that our team will be provided with litter pickers to dispose of any offensive rubbish that we come across during our visits.”

Imperial Road Waste

A mum, Bernadette Briton, told the Echo that her eight-year-old son picked up a needle near school.

She said: “Children shouldn’t know what these things are.

“We can’t use the park here because of used condoms and needles. It’s not nice.”

A spokesperson for Mount Pleasant Junior School, which overlooks Imperial Road, said: “Our school is a very safe and enjoyable place to learn and work.

“We work hard with our local community, Southampton City Council, Hampshire Police and other partners to continually improve our education provision and school site.

Daily Echo: Imperial RoadImperial Road

“We are keen to ensure that any anti-social behavior in our locality is addressed and does not impact our students, families or staff.”

Police say there has been a “slight increase” in the number of women returning to sex work or turning to sex work to make ends meet during the pandemic, but the population of sex workers in the street has remained stable over the past two years.

A Hampshire Police spokesperson said: “The safety of communities and of street sex workers themselves remains one of our priorities, which is why we carry out regular patrols in the area to ensure everyone’s safety.

“We are working hard with partners in Southampton City Council to improve the safety of the area, having secured funding from the Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) Headquarters bid.”