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Security, Conferences, 2010, Abstracts

Public-Private Security Provision in the Sex Industry

The paper asks how local prostitution regimes are reshaped in the process of urban neoliberalization. Based on a media analysis and interviews with Hamburg sex workers and regulatory stakeholders such as police, pimps, politicians, social workers, resident and business owner associations it shows how the policing of inner city neighborhoods in the process of image upgrading relies on self-regulatory mechanisms in the sex industry.

Policing practices vary not only according to form of prostitution but also neighborhood image. While prostitution catering to tourists(‘ curiosity), including their tolerated “private security”, become part of tourism gentrification strategies, drug prostitution and street prostitution of Eastern Europeans face intensified controls that are accompanied by exclusionary discourses.