Page last updated at 11:57 GMT, Monday, 5 May 2008 12:57 UK

New poster to tackle prostitution

Home Office poster
The peak age for men buying sex is 34, research has shown

A poster to get men to think twice about paying for sex with women who may have been trafficked has been launched.

The government pilot in Nottingham and the borough of Westminster tells men sleeping with a woman forced to work in the sex industry makes them a rapist.

A review in January set out to examine how to reduce demand for prostitution.

Home Office Minister Vernon Coaker described trafficking as "a vile and evil trade" and said sex buyers must be made to think about their actions.

The poster, which will be placed in gents' toilets in pubs and clubs, will be supported by an online advertising campaign.

It shows a brothel entrance with the caption: "Walk in a punter. Walk out a rapist."

It also urges men who discover a woman they believe may have been trafficked: "If you're man enough, call Crimestoppers."

Mr Coaker added: "These women are being treated as commodities and are sold, controlled and exploited by others for a profit. This is totally unacceptable.

"The advertising campaign we are launching today should help draw attention to the plight these women face and make men think again about what they are doing."

The peak age for men buying sex is 34, about half of whom are in a relationship, a 2007 report showed.

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