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Creating safe spaces in dangerous places: ‘Chicks Day’ for women who inject drugs

Creating safe spaces in dangerous places: ‘Chicks Day’ for women who inject drugs

Stengel, Camille May ORCID: 0000-0002-8812-7932 (2020) Creating safe spaces in dangerous places: ‘Chicks Day’ for women who inject drugs. In: Thom, Betsy and MacGregor, Susanne, (eds.) Risk and Substance Use: Framing Dangerous Classes and Dangerous Spaces. Routledge Studies in the Sociology of Health and Illness . Routledge, pp. 88-108. ISBN 978-1138491243 (doi:

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This chapter frames understandings of danger and safety by drawing on experiences from clients and staff of ‘Chicks Day’, which was the only women-exclusive needle and syringe exchange programme (NSEP) in Budapest, Hungary. Located in a deprived area of Budapest, Chicks Day provided weekly harm reduction services for women who injected drugs. The research data discussed in this chapter was generated using ethnographic and qualitative methods in combination with photovoice, a visual method where participants become photographers and document their understandings of the research phenomena. Chicks Day clients and staff took photographs about their experiences of harm production and harm reduction. Clients of the Chicks Day were primarily ethnically Roma, most of whom lived in poverty, and many engaged in sex work. As stated by one Chicks Day staff, the intersecting labels as “the junkie Gypsy prostitute” meant clients were constructed as a triple threat to the norms of mainstream Hungarian social and moral values. However, clients were not only framed as a ‘threat’ to societal norms; Chicks Day clients also experienced danger through their precarious physical, emotional, financial and sociocultural conditions. Chicks Day staff aimed to offer respite from this barrage of harms through the delivery of the women-only day as a ‘safe space’.

Item Type: Book Section
Additional Information: Ch. 6
Uncontrolled Keywords: women who inject drugs, harm reduction, Hungary, gender, drug use, photovoice, criminology
Subjects: K Law > K Law (General)
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences > Crime, Law & (In)Security Research Group (CLS)
Faculty of Liberal Arts & Sciences > School of Law & Criminology (LAC)
Last Modified: 14 May 2020 14:26

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