Red Umbrella Sexual Health and Human Rights Association

Location

Ankara
Turkey
Contact email: 
kirmizisemsiye.csihd@gmail.com
Who do you work with?: 
We work with transgender, female and male sex workers and their allies.
How are sex workers involved in your organisation?: 
Red Umbrella Sexual Health and Human Rights Association believes that sex workers themselves are the sole agents and experts of the problems they face. Therefore, in all aspects of the organisation, sex workers are the decision-makers. The Board of Red Umbrella SHHRA is composed of current and former sex workers. Policies and activities of the organisation is and will always be based on sex workers' needs, demands and suggestions.
Which of NSWP priority areas does your organisation work on?: 
Oppose the criminalisation and other legal oppression of sex work and support its recognition as work
Critique the trafficking paradigm that conflates representations of sex work, migration, and mobility
Advocate for universal access to health services, including primary health care, HIV and sexual and reproductive health services
Speak out about violence against sex workers, including violence from police, institutions, clients, and intimate partners, while challenging the myth that sex work is inherently gender-based violence
Oppose human rights abuses, including coercive programming, mandatory testing, raids and forced rehabilitation
Challenge stigma and discrimination against sex workers, their families and partners, and others involved in sex work
Advocate for the economic empowerment and social inclusion of sex workers as sex workers
What are the two main challenges that the sex workers you work with face: 
The first challenge is policies that criminalise sex workers and their clients. Even though the Turkish Penal Code does not mention that sex work is illegal, every attached activity around sex work is illegal in Turkey. Therefore sex work is criminalised in its different forms. Also, some other laws are used to harass or penalise sex workers. A second challenge would be violence and impunity for perpetrators.