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Edmonton moves to limit hours on body-rub parlours Add to ...

Edmonton is moving toward limiting the hours that licensed body-rub parlours can be open.

There are currently 38 known parlours in the city and half of them are allowed to stay open 24 hours.

Police, bylaw officers and parlour workers say that's not safe and tougher laws are needed.

In a survey done by the city, 80 per cent of women working in body-rub centres, said they had safety concerns with the 24-hour openings.

Edmonton police agree, saying massage parlours can turn into houses of prostitution and places where women are trafficked.

“We believe 24-hour operations increase the risk for sexual exploitation and it allows for workers to be kept on site indefinitely,” said acting Supt. Stewart Callioux.

“Twenty-four hour operations will also likely result in more children being introduced into the industry. More working hours require more staff.”

Advocates for vulnerable women asked that hours be restricted to between 11 a.m. and 11 p.m., but city councillors chose to extend them from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.

The recommendation is to be presented to council for approval July 18.

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