Stigma and Service Provision for Women Selling Sex. Findings from Community-based Participatory Research

Alison Jobe*, Kelly Stockdale, Maggie O’Neill

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
16 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This article presents findings from a community-based participatory research project undertaken with sex workers in North East England. The research included peer-led interviews with 26 women who sell sex in public spaces and/or from private flats or online. Community stakeholders were also interviewed. Focusing on local service provision and interactions with the police and the criminal justice system, this article documents how stigma frames sex worker’s experiences of local service provision and interactions with local criminal justice agencies. Although those selling sex in public and private spaces described different interactions with, and experiences of, local service providers, stigma remained a pervasive and dominant feature of all sex worker’s experiences. In the research, those selling sex ‘on street’ describe the impact of public stigmatisation while those selling sex ‘off street’ describe employing strategies of identity management to avoid the social consequences of sex work stigma. In this article, we explore how service provision is constructed through the current governance of sex work in England and Wales, and how sex work stigma could be challenged through service provision designed by sex workers, for sex workers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)112-128
Number of pages17
JournalEthics and Social Welfare
Volume16
Issue number2
Early online date23 Jan 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2022

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