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A Papatoetoe residents' group plans a street rally tonight in protest at sex workers of the notorious Hunters Corner, vandals and "low life".
A leaflet put out by the group says: "Embarrassed to say you live in Papatoetoe? We've had enough. Let's clean it up. Make the town what it once was."
A rally organiser, Ian McGechie, said he expected a large number of people to join the rally at the corner of Charles St and Great South Rd, going by the thousands who signed a week-old petition supporting an amendment to the Prostitution Act which will outlaw sex work.
Mr McGechie said the rally would be a peaceful protest and although timed for 9pm to 10pm, was not meant to confront sex workers.
He said it would be a chance for people to show the level of anger and frustration they felt about the effects of street prostitution and for Government politicians to realise the support for a law change.
"Over the past nine years the Hunters Corner shopping area has been plagued by street prostitution with its associated problems of graffiti, violent crime, offensive litters and solvent abuse.
"Despite video surveillance and additional policy, the problem has been getting worse and is harming businesses and the quality of life," said Mr McGechie.
"If it's offensive litter that's the problem we will have a campaign, because it's something we can do," said Prostitutes Collective national co-ordinator Catherine Healy.
"But I suspect the real problem is they do not accept sex workers and sex work, so it wouldn't matter whether they were on the Moon or Hunters Corner."
Manurewa MP George Hawkins has received two bills for prostitution and graffiti law reform from the Manukau City Council which he intends to present to Parliament this year.