Jill McCracken, PhD
Dr. Jill McCracken is an Associate Professor of Rhetoric at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg and Co-Founder / Co-Director of Sex Workers Outreach Program (SWOP) Behind Bars, an organization that provides community support for incarcerated sex workers and connects them within US prisons and jails to the sex worker rights movement. Having worked with sex workers and victims of trafficking for over fourteen years, her primary areas of research focus on sex work and trafficking in the sex industry, women and incarceration, and the impact of sexuality education on marginalized communities. Drawing on ethnographic and qualitative research methods, Dr. McCracken integrates community-based, participatory research into her work. She recently completed a Fulbright Specialist Project in collaboration with the New Zealand Prostitutes’ Collective that focused on how to prevent violence and trafficking in sex work and the ways legislative models enhance or impinge on sex workers’ health, safety and well-being. Her current book, Learning with Women in Jail: Creating Community Based Participatory Research (forthcoming 2019) documents the research process she and her co-researchers (women who were incarcerated in the Pinellas County Jail) conducted to better understand incarceration and recidivism. She is currently working on the Adolescent Sexual Health Education and Research (ASHER) Project with youth in high-risk situations to better understand and prevent exploitation and violence.Dr. McCracken speaks at local, national and international venues about trafficking in the sex industry, women and incarceration, harm reduction, and social justice organizing. She provides training on harm reduction, sex work and trafficking in the sex industry, gender and sexuality in the workplace, and sexuality education. Her work has been recognized through many awards and honors including the USF Outstanding Faculty Award, Women in Research and Philanthropy USF Faculty Research Award, the Chancellor’s Awards for Excellence in Teaching and Service.
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