Date of Award

January 2016

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


School of Public Health

First Advisor

Alice M. Miller

Second Advisor

John Pachankis


This work lays the foundation for a study of criminalization and its effects on the health of street-based sex workers in the U.S. seeking to: 1) conduct a systematized review of sources from across the country settling on seventeen that describe experiences of harassment, false arrests, theft, physical abuse, sexual assault, HIV criminalization, survival tactics, reporting practices, and positive relations with law enforcement and 2.) compare the U.S. literature to international research, reflecting on the ways that public health researchers remain complicit in sustaining these harmful institutions by failing to consider diversity, the criminalized context of sex work, the links between policing and health, and the importance of collaboration. Through a radical framework of health and human rights I propose centering the experiences of street-based sex workers in a moment when the U.S. is renegotiating its relationship with law enforcement.


This is an Open Access Thesis.

Open Access

This Article is Open Access