Regina city council is looking to whether or not they can enforce massage parlours that offer adult services.
The city believes 21 body rub parlours are operating in the city, with the city citing public health and safety concerns for both the clients and those involved in the industry.
Mayor Michael Fougere said it’s a growing problem in the Queen City.
“The change of the definition of prostitution by the Supreme Court of Canada in part has moved prostitution off the street elsewhere, and that’s a problem as well,” Fougere said. “We’re seeing the plethoration of massage parlours, or body rubs if you want to use that term, now becoming into force in the city.”
While some city Councillors are onside with regulating the parlours, some want them outlawed completely in the city, which is done in Prince Albert, as well as Dauphin and Steinbach, Manitoba.
Fougere said this will be a difficult decision for council to make.
“What we need to hear is from the public, is to consult with them, to see what they believe, then look at the legal opinion of this framework, and RPS would have their say, and others who are involved in the industry (could ask) ‘what exactly should we be doing?'” Fougere said. “It’s not going to be easy.”
Regina Police superintendent Darcy Koch said RPS is in favour of regulating the businesses.
“It’ll allow us to better understand this industry, this sector that’s operating in our city right now unregulated,” Koch said. “It’ll allow us, along with other community partners, to better respond to the vulnerable people that work inside these establishments.”
During executive council on Wednesday, several delegations spoke on the matter. A final decision from council will likely come in the new year.