On Monday the local media told of the fall and rise of former Leeds escort Sharere Kirk, who is now studying for a degree in architecture. Today, Aisha Iqbal speaks to two women who have devoted their professional lives to helping current and former working girls.
SEX workers and their supporters say legalising prostitution is the only way to beat the cycle of vice and violence.
Protection for the girls is vital, they say, but current and proposed legislation is "dangerous and backward."
Sara Walker is part of the English Collective of Prostitutes, a support network including hundreds of former and current prostitutes, which works with many girls in West Yorkshire and the North.
It has campaigned for many years for the decriminalisation of prostitution.
On Monday, the YEP spoke to former prostitute Sharere Kirk, who has now rebuilt her life.
She is calling for a re-think of prostitution legislation to offer more protection to girls.
Ms Walker said Sharere's story was typical of what prostitutes face every day and official figures don't take into account the thousands of women working behind closed doors either alone or in illegal brothels.
Instead, the headlines focus on street workers, human trafficking and drugs, she said.
She referred to new proposals in the Policing and Crime Bill, which is passing through Parliament.
It proposes increasing police powers to arrest brothel keepers and sex workers selling sex from a property.
The new legislation would also bring in compulsory rehab, even for those who might not want or need it, and would extend police powers to seize prostitutes' earnings and assets under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
Ms Walker said: "As long as prostitution laws are on the books, the women are branded as criminals.
"The laws are putting women in danger.
"It's urgent and essential to decriminalise and remove the stigma about prostitution that leads to violence against women.
"But (the proposed new legislation] will push prostitution further underground and sex workers into more danger.
"Focusing on people involved in consenting sex should not be the business of the law."
Ms Walker said figures claiming 80 per cent of prostitute women are drug-addicts were skewed because they refer to projects which only work with street workers.
The Government's own research says 74 per cent of prostitutes working indoors were doing it because of debt and homelessness, or because they are carers working to make ends meet, she said.
"The main reasons are not drugs, but a lack of money and resources, so most women who work for themselves want to keep quiet what they are doing.
"What (Sharere) said is exactly what most women we speak to have said: remove the stigma and the violence and protect women."
The collective is calling for a system similar to New Zealand, where prostitution has been decriminalised and mini-brothels with up to four women operate legally.
Ms Walker said the economic crisis is forcing more women into or back into the sex industry.