Leeds MP Hilary Benn to visit Holbeck residents as they protest against 'managed approach' to street sex work

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Residents opposed to the operation of what has been dubbed Britain's first 'legal' red light zone are set to gather again this afternoon to voice their concerns.

They will meet at St Matthew's Community Centre in Holbeck from 4pm for the latest in a series of protests calling for an end to the city's 'managed approach' to street sex work.

PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe

PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe

Read more: Holbeck residents stage third protest to highlight toll of ‘managed approach'

Started by community safety partnership Safer Leeds as a pilot in October 2014, the scheme allows sex workers to operate freely within certain hours on a specified series of streets in Holbeck.

Rules set out from the beginning included not working outside the agreed times and locations, not leaving used condoms or syringes behind, and not using drugs in the street.

Read more: Safer Leeds denies 'crisis meeting' held over controversial scheme dubbed Britain’s first legal red light zone

A ‘three strikes’ policy meant rule-breakers would get a warning for a first breach, a caution for a second and be arrested for a third infringement.

But residents have become increasingly vocal about what they say is a failure by the authorities to enforce those rules.

Read more: "Our children are forced to step over condoms and needles in ‘managed zone’ in Leeds"

Today the residents are expecting to be joined by Leeds Central MP Hilary Benn, who has been invited along to hear about their concerns.