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Spokeswoman: De Blasio Opposes Topless Times Square Women, Agencies At Work To Tackle Issue

Updated Tuesday, Aug. 18 8:42 a.m.

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio considers the dozens of topless women in body paint posing for photos in Times Square unacceptable, a mayoral spokeswoman says.

Spokeswoman Karen Hinton said it's a quality-of-life problem and city agencies are working on approaches to tackle it, WCBS 880's Ginny Kosola reported.

The women call themselves "desnudas," Spanish for "naked," and pose for photos in exchange for tips.

Spokeswoman: De Blasio Opposes Topless Times Square Women, Agencies At Work To Tackle Issue

Though toplessness is not illegal in New York, aggressive panhandling and aggressive solicitation are illegal.

"We have researched that top to bottom. We cannot find any law that allows us to interfere with that freedom of expression reflective through art form," police Commissioner Bill Bratton told CBS2 last month.

Some police officers have even been spotted taking photos with the women, 1010 WINS' Glenn Schuck reported.

Topless, Painted Women In Times Square Irk Some

The number of the topless women in Times Square, however, has grown to dozens.

Gale Brewer and some other City Council members, including Corey Johnson, D-Manhattan, are calling for immediate action.

Caitlin Lewis, spokeswoman for the Times Square Alliance, said the business group is excited to work with the administration on the issue.

"We recognize the issue's complicated, not just from a legal perspective but also in striking a balance that maintains Times Square's quirkiness without letting it get creepy," Lewis told Kosola.

Some people at the Crossroads of the World told CBS2 last month the street is no place for such an art form.

"It's supposed to be a family place to be," said one mom.

"I personally don't think it's appropriate," said another woman.

A Times Square vendor told Schuck he sees the city deteroriating slowly, and that the desnudas are part of the problem.

When asked what he would say to the mayor, the vendor said: "Fix it. Get tough. ... Who doesn't want to see naked women? But there's a time and place for everything."

Others, however, love the exposure.

"I think it's great," one mom said.

"If you have it, paint it," said another.

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