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The New York Police Department announced on Monday that they will no longer confiscate condoms from suspected prostitutes to use as evidence.
Police Commissioner Bill Bratton made the announcement and said the new policy is "a reasonable approach to targeting the most at-risk community as it relates to safer sex practices," reports The New York Daily News. Condoms will now be returned to those suspected of prostitution when other personal effects are handed back over.
Mayor Bill de Blasio publicly supported the change, saying it was "the right thing to do." He added, "A policy that actually inhibits people from safe sex is a mistake."
As previously reported, police would use condoms found on suspected sex workers as evidence of illicit activity. A 2010 study claimed that due to the original policy, it led to many deciding the better move was not to carry condoms.
"Sex workers are more likely victims than they are criminals, and condom evidence was rarely of any value to a prosecution," said Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice.