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Asia and the Pacific
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 18 responses were from 11 countries – Australia, Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong, Myanmar, Nepal, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and Vietnam – in the Asia and the Pacific region
A sex worker in New Zealand has won a sexual harassment case against a business owner, including a six-figure settlement to compensate for "emotional harm and lost earnings", the country’s human rights commission has said.
In October we reported on The National Human Rights Commission, India who had issued an advisory recognising sex workers as informal workers. The 11-page advisory titled 'Human Rights Advisory on rights of Women in Context of COVID-19' listed recommendations for sex workers under the women at work section.
National Case Study: Usha Multipurpose Cooperative Society Limited – Economic Empowerment for Sex Workers
Usha Multipurpose Cooperative Society Limited (USHA) is the largest and the first ever sex worker-led financial institution in South Asia, exclusively run by and for sex workers. Steered by Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee (DMSC), a sex worker collective in West Bengal, India, USHA provides economic empowerment to sex workers by offering them loans at low interest rates, encouraging short and long-term savings and supporting self-employment schemes.