Charity under fire for pinning condoms to trees at gay cruising spot
A father has complained about a charity pinning free condoms to trees at a known cruising spot – after his 10-year-old daughter saw “a man getting spit roasted”.
Local residents in Brighouse, West Yorkshire are up in arms over the tactic of local STI clinic the Brunswick Centre – which left free condoms in the woods near Kirklees Lagoon, a known local cruising spot.
Local angler Steve Kelly told the Daily Star: “I came down with my daughter once when she was 10 and we saw a man getting spit-roasted in the trees. It’s shocking.
“People come here because they know they’ll get away with it. It’s gay men, straight couples, groups, men on their own; you name it, it happens here.
“Providing them with condoms only encourages them. I don’t see the sense in it. Surely if they don’t put them there, they’re less likely to come back.
He added: “It’s driving people away. These people have no shame. It’s been going on for years and yet nothing is done to stop it.”
However, the charity contends that it is not endorsing the behaviour – and is just allowing people to practise safe sex.
Brunswick Centre manager John McKernaghan said: “We are just responding to what goes on there.
“Our priority is that people practise safe sex. We are providing people with information and advice about preventing sexually transmitted infections and, particularly, HIV.”
West Yorkshire Police insists there isn’t much that can be done to stop cruising.
Inspector Rachel Bairstow said: “We are aware of the concerns raised about apparent sexual activity in the area near to Kirklees Lagoon and are continuing to work closely with partners and relevant agencies.
“It is not illegal for people to meet at sites such as the Lagoon. Where behaviour may constitute a criminal offence, all reports will always be treated seriously and dealt with sensitively.”
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