The New York Police Department is currently reviewing their policies in light of a recent bill that would prohibit condoms from being used as evidence in prostitution cases. New York State Bill S1379/A2736 would make New York the first state to prohibit condoms from being used in this manner. The NYPD has historically opposed this type of bill as the use of condoms as evidence has resulted in thousands of prostitution arrests each year.
Under the current law, police officers and prosecutors can use the possession of condoms, typically multiple condoms, as reason to question or arrest an individual. This type of profiling has come under criticism by human rights groups not only in New York but other large cities across the country. Certain groups, particularly immigrants and transgender teens, have started limiting the number of condoms they carry for fear of police questioning. This fear is of major concern to public health workers who are looking combat the spread of diseases among sexual partners.
Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice told The Associated Press that since most cases involving prostitution do not typically make it to trial, she feels that this type of evidence is not as important as many would believe.
The bill is now currently under review by the New York Senate. Supporters of the bill hope to have a resolution by the end of the month.