New York's Condom Bait-and-Switch

Added on by Emily Carey Gogolak.

One block north of the boardwalk in Coney Island, a white van is parked on the windswept block of Surf Avenue, between West 22nd and West 23rd Streets. Just outside the van stands a young woman wearing a teal hoodie, her auburn hair pulled back into a tight bun with a few loose strands escaping around her ears, and an anxious expression. Jennifer Gonzalez-Hermides, 32, is a prostitute, and she is here to pick up free condoms. But there is a problem. “The first time,” she says, “was right over here on Surf Avenue. They asked me to take out what was in my pocket, and I had one in there.” Sweat glistens on her pale forehead. “They arrested me.”

Read more in The Village Voice