Governing sex workers through trust evaluating policing practices for sex workers’ safety throu...

Mira FEY

Drawing on qualitative fieldwork with differen key actors in Geneva, Switzerland, I apply procedural justice theory to the governance of prostitution. My findings show that the vice squad is ill-equipped to protect sex workers from violence and exploitation because their everyday practices during interactions with sex workers, aimed at creating trust, rely on affect alone. Conversely, the community RLD unit utilizes both fair treatment and a transparent decision-making process which successfully creates trust relationships with sex workers, increasing their willingness to report incidents of violence and exploitation. This has important implications for prostitution policy aimed at improving sex workers’ safety.