This article was reported for ENEMY Magazine, a new print magazine and newsletter dedicated to reporting on abuses of power in news deserts and underrepresented communities across the United States. Subscribe to ENEMY here.
Over the years, Sophia* built up a dependable set of regulars. Sex work paid “enough to survive more than comfortably” and it was work she preferred over jobs she’d had in the past, like working in restaurants or warehouses. Those jobs, she said, were “much more labor intensive for quite a lot less pay.”
But when news of the coronavirus first began to circulate in January, business started to slow. As the pandemic intensified into the summer, Sophia said she no longer made enough to cover her living expenses. “I get maybe one call every week or two compared to the two to three per day I was used to,” she told ENEMY in June.