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This document aims to provide guidance to nongovernmental organisations engaging with the CEDAW review process and providing alternative information to the CEDAW Committee on the theme of rights of sex workers. It accompanies the Framework on Rights of Sex Workers & CEDAW as a practical tool to aid documentation and analysis using the CEDAW Convention as a frame of reference.

This Framework seeks to connect human rights principles to the debates around prostitution laws and sex work. It is intended to be a tool to inform the rights discourse on sex work in the context of one such international human rights treaty— the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).

This resource is a Community Guide to the Briefing Paper on Sex Workers’ Access to Comprehensive Sexual and Reproductive Health Services. It provides an overview of the full Briefing Paper, and provides key recommendations for policy makers and health service providers. 

You can download this 5-page Community Guide above. This resource is available in Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish. 

Theme: Health

Globally sex workers experience a number of barriers to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services, ranging from explicit exclusion from international financing to discrimination within SRH services leading to lower access rates.

This paper discusses the obstacles sex workers face when accessing SRH services, and examines the quality of services available to them. It also provides practical examples and recommendations for improving the accessibility and acceptability of SRH services for sex workers.

Theme: Health

Global community-led networks have expressed serious concerns over the decision to name San Francisco and Oakland as host cities to the International AIDS Conference in 2020, which was announced on 13th March.

Theme: Health

A growing number of countries are considering or implementing sex work law reform focusing on ‘ending demand’, which criminalises the purchase of sexual services. This Policy Brief outlines the impact of ‘end demand’ legislation on the human rights of female sex workers, through research and testimony from NSWP members in countries where paying for sex is criminalised. This document explores how these laws not only fail to promote gender equality for women who sell sex, but actively prevent the realisation of their human rights.

This resource is a Community Guide to the Briefing Paper: Migrant Sex Workers. It provides an overview of the full Briefing Paper, and provides key recommendations for policy makers and health service providers. 

You can download this 5-page Community Guide above. This resource is available in Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish. 

This Briefing Paper explores the human rights barriers encountered by migrant sex workers as a result of their type of labour. It highlights their lack of access to services, as well as the increased precariousness and exclusion they face due to legal restrictions on cross-border movement and work in the sex industry. This paper also places migrant sex work in the context of international labour migration, using consultation responses from NSWP member organisations.

This ‘Smart Sex Workers’ Guide’ provides an overview of the advocacy tools and interventions used by sex worker-led organisations globally to combat violence against sex workers. It builds on the guidance provided in ‘Addressing Violence Against Sex Workers’, chapter 2 of the Sex Worker Implementation Tool (SWIT). This resource may be useful with designing programmes, tools and other approaches to addressing violence.

Theme: Violence

PION, Norway, with support from NSWP, submitted this shadow report to the 68th CEDAW Session, which took place October-November 2017. The report is based on in-depth interviews, conducted over a two-month period, with sex workers and social service providers. It documents how local administrative laws and the criminalisation of clients and third parties increase stigma and discrimination, impede access to justice and health services, and result in arbitrary deportations and evictions.

Download this resource: PION Norway CEDAW Shadow Report

The Kenya Sex Worker Alliance (KESWA) and Bar Hostess Empowerment and Support Programme, with support from NSWP and CREA, submitted this shadow report to the 68th CEDAW Session, which took place October-November 2017. Titled “Aren’t We Also Women,” the report incorporates quotes from sex workers and is based on desk research and extensive interviews with KESWA member organisations.

Project X, Singapore, with support from NSWP, submitted this shadow report to the 68th CEDAW Session, which took place October-November 2017. The report focuses on the various human rights abuses and discrimination. In particular, it focuses on the ambiguous legal framework governing sex work in Singapore and the impact it has on women’s lives.

This Smart Guide builds on NSWP’s existing toolkit on the 'Nordic model’, and looks at the harms caused to sex workers in countries where the Nordic Model has been introduced. It draws on the experiences of NSWP members, using submissions, in-depth interviews and case studies gathered through a consultation process.

This pamphlet by the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective offers information to sex workers who have experienced sexual assault, as well as advice for how others can be supportive. The guide includes ideas for emotional and physical self-care, people to contact for support, and considerations if the assault occurred in a brothel environment.

Theme: Violence

17 December 2017 marks the 14th annual International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers.

For fourteen years, sex workers around the world have used this day to highlight the need for action to end violence against sex workers. The issues faced by sex workers often vary from region to region, due to different laws, social and cultural contexts, but one common issue faced by all sex workers is their vulnerability to and experience of violence.

This resource is a Community Guide to the Policy Brief on the Impact of Criminalisation on Sex Workers’ Vulnerability to HIV and Violence. This guide summarises how criminalisation increases sex workers’ vulnerability to violence and HIV, and makes a series of recommendations towards the full decriminalisation of sex work as an integral step to improving the lives of sex workers. The full Policy Brief is available here