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Regulating sex for saleProstitution policy reform in the UK$
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Jo Phoenix

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9781847421067

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847421067.001.0001

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Out on the streets and out of control? Drug-using sex workers and the prostitution strategy

Out on the streets and out of control? Drug-using sex workers and the prostitution strategy

Chapter:
(p.83) Five Out on the streets and out of control? Drug-using sex workers and the prostitution strategy
Source:
Regulating sex for sale
Author(s):

Margaret Melrose

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781847421067.003.0005

This chapter critically considers the assumptions underlying policy proposals for sex-working drug users and drug-using sex workers in New Labour's prostitution strategy. It argues that by conflating sex work with other social problems, particularly drug addiction (see, for example, Cusick and Berney, 2005; Melrose, 2006a), the strategy conveniently sidesteps the wider structural problems associated with involvement in street sex work, such as poverty, social exclusion, and homelessness. The chapter explains that what the strategy offers are punitive responses that provide ‘individualized solutions to de-contextualized social problems’ (Phoenix, 2003), rather that structural solutions to socially contextualized social problems (Buchanan, 2004; Cusick and Berney, 2005; Melrose, 2006a).

Keywords:   drug users, sex workers, New Labour, social problems, drug addiction, street sex work, poverty, social exclusion, homelessness

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