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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 219140 
Title: Regulating Prostitution: Controlling Women's Lives (From Gender and Justice: New Concepts and Approaches, P 76-95, 2006, Frances Heidensohn, ed. -- See NCJ-219137)
Author(s): Joanna Phoenix
Date Published: 2006
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: Willan Publishing
Portland, OR 97213-3644
Sale Source: Willan Publishing
c/o ISBS, 5804 N.E. Hassalo Street
Portland, OR 97213-3644
United States of America
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Book Chapter
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter examines how street prostitution in Great Britain is currently regulated and the gendered nature and impact of that regulation.
Abstract: The chapter argues that the women who compose the majority of street prostitutes in Great Britain are currently subject to an interlocking system of regulation that variously defines them as criminal offenders, threats to public health, victims of child abuse, and vulnerable women who must be compelled under the threat of punishment to seek welfare help. Each label or approach to the street prostitute involves a set of interventions aimed at changing or working with different aspects of the women's lives. This produces an interlocking system of regulation, because the interventions are not mutually exclusive. A street prostitute can be defined as both a victim and an offender and as both a patient in need of medical help and a threat to public health. This comprehensive system of regulation means that a street prostitute faces not only a wide range of criminal justice dispositions, but also mandatory participation in programs in which her relationships and the choices she makes in her life outside of prostitution are subject to scrutiny and intervention. Given that street prostitutes are mostly poor women seeking economic survival in a profession that makes them vulnerable to victimization, the current regulatory system is an attempt to control a small group of poor women regarding their choices and relationships as they struggle to survive poverty. Whereas in the 1980s in Great Britain, a woman involved in street prostitution may have faced only a fine, now she is subject to a more extensive range of criminal justice actions accompanied by various government interventions designed to remake her life. 3 notes and 29 references
Main Term(s): Female victims
Index Term(s): Foreign laws; Gender issues; Great Britain/United Kingdom; Intervention; Prostitution; Prostitution causes
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