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Council consider sex licence move

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By Fiona Reid
Council consider sex licence move

SHOULD strip clubs and lap dancing bars be licensed to run in the region?

Thats the issue under consideration by Dumfries and Galloway Council, who are poised to carry out a public consultation on the licensing of Sexual Entertainment Venues (SEVs).
It is not believed there are any such premises in the region just now, but if the local authority wish to offer licences for future developments they need to adopt a new resolution laid down by the Scottish Government. That would allow the council to have a say over where SEVs could be located to avoid sensitive sites, such as near places of worship and schools, and to also decide how many would be appropriate in the area, including ruling them out completely.
If they decide against licensing, venues can still operate but the council would have no ability to regulate them.
A report has been drawn up on the matter for next weeks Communities Committee meeting in Dumfries.
If agreed, a public consultation will then take place, with the results expected to be reported in July. At that point, councillors would decide whether to start the licensing process and have to decide how many, if any, SEVs they would allow to operate within Dumfries and Galloway. A policy statement would also be needed, outlining how such a move would affect public nuisance, crime and disorder, public safety, protecting children from harm and reducing violence against women.
The legal definition of a SEV is: any premises at which sexual entertainment is provided before a live audience for (or with a view to) the financial gain of the organiser and where it is for the sole or principal purpose of sexual stimulation of members of the audience – generally it applies to lapdancing bars and strip clubs.


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