AIDS

UNDP Summary of E-Discussion: The Global Commision on HIV and the Law

Year: 
2014

The summary discussion looks at highlights and activities that have advanced The Commission’s recommendations. The report has been widely disseminated at the national level to key policy makers with a view to persuade decision makers to promote a favourable legal framework to respond to HIV. Concrete changes in legal framework changes (in relation to sex workers and other key populations) as recommended by The Commission are however, not reported.

Progress so far: The Global Commission on HIV and the Law

The Commision on HIV and the Law have released a summary of an E-Discussion held in June 2013 organised by UNDP’s HIV, Health and Development Group in collaboration with the Democratic Governance Group and the Gender Team.

Human Rights Watch calls for repeal of forcible medical testing and discrimination in Greece

Human Rights Watch released a report on July 4, condemning the use of mandatory health examinations, isolation, and compulsory treatment in Greece, which has been reinstated into law on July 26, upon reappointment of Health Minister Adonis Georgiadis.

Health Regulation No. GY/39A, “Amendments that Concern the Restriction of Transmission of Infectious Diseases,” permits police to detain people without due process for the testing of HIV and other diseases of public health importance, focusing on certain priority groups, including anyone suspected of being a sex worker, intravenous drug users, undocumented migrants, and anyone living without “minimum standards” of hygiene, such as the homeless.

Since the bill was first introduced in April 2012, until April of this year when it was temporarily repealed, dozens of women suspected of being sex workers were forced to take HIV tests. When found positive, they were charged with the felony of “intentional grievous bodily harm,” or “attempted bodily harm” for having unprotected sex with customers.  The police and media published their photographs, HIV status, and personal information, and detained many of these women for months while they awaited trial. In March 2013, almost a full year after the crackdown, the last five of these women were acquitted by the courts, which found “no strong evidence” for charges of intentional harm.

Criminalising Condoms: how policing practices put sex workers and HIV services at risk in Kenya, Namibia, Russia, South Africa, the United States, and Zimbabwe.

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Year: 
2012

'Criminalising Condoms' details the experiences of sex workers and outreach services across six countries (Kenya, Namibia, Russia, Zimbabwe, South Africa and the United States). It finds that where any degree of criminalisation exists (whether of sex workers themselves, or of activities relating to sex work), condoms are used as evidence of sex work. This forces sex workers to choose between carrying safer sex supplies, thus attracting the deleterious attentions of the police, or working without condoms in the hope that the police will refrain from harassment - but also without the supplies that would protect them from HIV.

US Supreme Court strikes down Anti-Prostitution pledge: Vindication for VAMP / SANGRAM

File 1174Statement

US Supreme Court strikes down Anti-Prostitution pledge

Vindication for VAMP / SANGRAM

22 July 2013 Sangli, Maharashtra

In a victory for sex worker rights across the world, the United States Supreme Court on 20th June 2013, struck down as unconstitutional the legal requirement that organisations receiving US assistance for HIV programs must have an explicit policy opposing `prostitution’. Popularly known as the anti-prostitution pledge, the provision effectively denied financial support to sex work programming in HIV despite widespread scientific and UN consensus that such programming is essential for a successful HIV response.

Implications of the U.S. Supreme Court Ruling on the Anti-Prostitution Loyalty Oath

File 1168

On June 20, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 6-2 decision in Agency for International Development v. Alliance for Open Society International, Inc. that the Policy Requirement of the Anti-Prostitution Loyalty Oath, from the U.S. Leadership Act of 2003, violates the First Amendment, and is therefore unconstitutional.
 
A partial victory for the sex worker movement, it unfortunately makes no stated distinction between sex work and human trafficking, and it is not a defence of sex worker rights. However, this ruling may decrease stigma around sex work, by allowing organisations in the United States that receive PEPFAR funding to publically adopt a neutral stance towards sex work, and focus on implementing best practices for public health aims. 

Sign-On to Increase Meaningful Coverage of Key Populations at the International AIDS Conference

ACTION ALERT! - deadline extended

new report released on June 4th, 2013 by a coalition of global advocacy organisations shows that the International AIDS Conference (IAC) program continues to lack meaningful coverage of HIV-related issues concerning men who have sex with men (MSM), transgender people, people who inject drugs (PWID), and sex workers.

Analysing the Implementation of PEPFAR's anti-prostitution pledge

An analysis of the implementation of PEPFAR’s anti-prostitution pledge and its implications for successful HIV prevention among organizations working with sex workers

Melissa Hope Ditmore & Dan Allman have written this analysis published in the Journal of the international AIDS Society

Abstract follows:

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NSWP Response to PEPFAR Guidance 2012

World AIDS Day was marked by an air of optimism amongst many donors, international funders and governments last year. Due to a history of exclusion from the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), we as the Global Network of Sex Work Projects (NSWP) were particularly interested to see the US Government’s revised blueprint for ‘Creating an AIDS-free Generation’.

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Research for Sex Work 13: HIV and Sex Work – The view from 2012

The 13th issue of Research for Sex Work was released on December 17, 2012.

Research for Sex Work is a publication intended for sex workers, activists, health workers, researchers, NGO staff and policymakers. It is published annually by the Global Network of Sex Work Projects (NSWP) and is governed by an Editorial Board consisting of sex workers, staff of support organisations and researchers.

This issue is on the theme of HIV and Sex Work.

Contents:

  • Editorial (Laura María Agustín)
  • Anti-Pornography Crackdowns: Sex Work and HIV in China (China Sex Worker Organisation Network Forum)
  • Living With HIV: How I Treat Myself (Told by Diputo Lety to Elsa Oliveira)
  • Men At Work: Male Sex Workers, HIV and the Law (Brendan Michael Conner)
  • Blaming Disease On Female Sex Workers: A Long History (Tiphaine Besnard)
  • Working With the Global Fund to Fight Aids, Tuberculosis and Malaria (Empower Foundation Thailand)
  • Sexual-Health Outreach in Machala, Ecuador (Asociación ‘22 de junio’ and Colectivo Flor de Azalea)
  • Promoting Sex Worker-Led Research in Namibia (Matthew Greenall and Abel Shinana)
  • The Tide Can Not Be Turned Without Us (Cheryl Overs)
  • Gay Parties and Male Sex Workers in Nigeria (Kehinde Okanlawon and Ade Iretunde)
  • No Condoms as Evidence: A Sex-Worker Campaign in New York (Audacia Ray and Sarah Elspeth Patterson)
  • ‘The Space Which Is Not Mine’: Sex Workers Living With HIV/AIDS in Venice and Edinburgh (Nicoletta Policek)
  • Female-Condom Use in Zimbabwe, Cameroon and Nigeria (Winny Koster and Marije Groot Bruinderink)

PDFs of the “HIV and Sex Work – The view from 2012” Research for Sex Work, a bilingual publication in English and Chinese, can be downloaded below (32 page PDF document), or free hard copies can be requested by emailing secretariat@nswp.org.

ALL ISSUES OF RESEARCH FOR SEX WORK CAN BE FOUND HERE.

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