Sociological Perspectives on Sex Work and Human Trafficking

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In the United States and beyond, there is often a wide disconnect between grounded empirical evidence about the sex industry and policies on sex work and human trafficking. In this introduction, we briefly review empirical and critical scholarly literature on sex work and human trafficking policy within the United States. We then introduce three sociological articles that provide compelling empirical research on individuals who work in the sex trade as well as those who organize on behalf of sex workers and trafficked individuals. We conclude by inviting more sociologists to narrow the gap between reliable empirical evidence and policies on sex work and human trafficking, and we urge activists and policy makers to listen.

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