Resources

Legislation around sex work can be extremely complex and different legal models exist in different countries, and sometimes even within countries. While understanding the written laws and regulations is important, it does not provide a complete picture of the impact of sex work laws on the lives of sex workers. To understand this, it is essential to understand how the laws are interpreted, enforced, and implemented on the ground.

In April 2020, NSWP launched a global survey to understand the impact of COVID-19 on sex workers. The survey received 156 responses in total from 55 different countries out of which 22 responses were from 13 countries – Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Togo, Tunisia, and Zambia – in the Africa region.

In April 2020, NSWP launched a global survey to understand the impact of COVID-19 on sex workers. The survey received 156 responses in total, from 55 different countries, out of which 9 responses were from 4 countries – Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, and El Salvador – in the Latin America region.

NSWP denounces the harassment, arrests and detention of sex workers as part of the recently launched ‘Ujana’ programme in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

In Kampala, Uganda, there is a large network of sex worker-led organisations that unite under the umbrella organisation Uganda Harmonized Rights Alliance (UHRA). Paula Pönkänen and Hanna Jörneus argue that sex work organising in Uganda is a great example of how sex workers develop and implement their own programming. They provide an overview of sex worker-led programming in Kampala.

Kenyan sex workers continue to suffer human rights violations. Sex workers also bear a  disproportionately large burden of HIV. This could be significantly reduced by a rights-based approach to their health needs. This research by GNP+ focuses on the human rights violations that female sex workers living with HIV face when they access healthcare services. It also highlights violations by law enforcement officers that impact on sex workers’ vulnerability to and ability to manage HIV.

This case study reflects on the development and impact of the Sex Worker Academy Africa (SWAA). The SWAA is a ground-breaking learning programme for community empowerment and capacity building, led by and for sex workers. The Academy brings together national teams of sex workers from across Africa to develop organising skills, learn best practices, stimulate national sex worker movements, and strengthen the regional network.

Sixty-five sex workers were arrested on Thursday 19th November in Kisii County, Kenya. The following day, the sex workers were taken to Kisii Teaching and Referral Hospital and tested for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). The leading officer from the Kisii Governor’s Office, Mr. Patrick Lumumba, stated there were too many sex workers loitering the streets of Kisii, “spreading HIV and STIs to married men”.

The Global Network of Sex Work Projects (NSWP) stands by Human Rights Defender Alejandra Gil and Amnesty International’s decision to adopt a policy to protect the human rights of sex workers, including the full decriminalisation of sex work.

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This Africa Regional Report documents case studies of economic empowerment programmes in 6 African countries: Democratic Republic of Congo; Ethiopia; Kenya; Malawi; Nigeria; and Uganda. There are relatively few economic empowerment programmes for sex workers led by sex workers in Africa. As such this regional report evaluates both successful and failed economic empowerment programmes by sex worker-led organisations and non-sex worker-led organisations.

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This briefing paper discusses case studies on economic empowerment programmes for sex workers with rehabilitation elements, documented across the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Malawi, Nigeria and Uganda. The case studies highlight factors that negatively affect sex workers’ participation in economic empowerment programmes and looks at some of the key lessons that have been learnt when implementing economic empowerment programmes for sex workers. A summary is also available.
This report documents good practices for sex worker-led organisations in four African countries including Kenya, Uganda, Cameroon, and South Africa. The organisations documented are the Bar Hostess Empowerment and Support Programme (BHESP), the Women’s Organisation Network for Human Rights Advocacy (WONETHA), the Aids ACODEV Cameroon, and SISONKE in South Africa.
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Theme: Health
This document summarises the process for conducting the documenting of good practices led by sex workers. Initiation, planning and delivery of work took place between June and December 2013.
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Theme: Health

NSWP has released a statement in relation to the arrest of Alejandra Gil.

From our understanding of the situation, the charges in question emanate from new legislation, which in our view conflates sex work with human trafficking. 

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This study can be used as evidence of the need for governments and health programmes to take the needs and rights of sex workers living with HIV on board!

Although disproportionately affected by HIV, sex workers remain neglected by efforts to expand access to ART. In Zimbabwe, this qualitative research study was carried out to determine some of the reasons sex workers take up HIV referrals and ART initiation.

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Theme: Health

This article analyzes the aspirations of michês, straight-identified Brazilian men who exchange sex for money with gay-identified male sex tourists from North America and Western Europe.

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Based upon detailed life histories of 96 Ugandan sex workers, this article documents the pathways women take into sex work through marital separation and the subsequent need to support children via rural-urban migration to obtain wage work in Kampala.

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The Conference was held in La Habana, Cuba, from April 7 - 12, 2003. The first Latin-American conference happened in Rio de Janeiro on 2000. Cuba was chosen because of the low incidence of HIV (lowest in Latin America). Around 39 countries and more than 2000 participants attended the conference. Like always, there was a very low participation of sex workers.

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Theme: Health

MEDIA RELEASE
Monday, January 20, 2003

Network of Sex Work Projects responds to city murders

The international Network of Sex Work Projects (NSWP — based in Cape Town) has reacted with shock and horror at the execution style murder of young men working in a City massage parlour earlier today. This is a tragic loss of the lives of young folk. The Network is an organisation that advocates around the health and human rights of sex workers at an international level.

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Theme: Violence