Sex workers and sex worker rights activists across the world have been campaigning tirelessly these past few weeks to highlight the importance of a call for the full decriminalisation of sex work. Many sex worker groups and allies across the world wrote to Amnesty International’s Secretary General in support of the proposed policy on sex work. One such letter, from Empower Foundation in Thailand - which has been advocating for the rights of Thai sex workers for over 30 years - wrote:
“Criminalization has not led to increased human rights or reduced abuses; it has only led to more stigma and more real crimes.’
Amnesty International joins other major international agencies such as UNAIDS, WHO, Human Rights Watch, the Lancet, GAATW in the call for the full decriminalisation of sex work. Sex workers and our allies’ campaign for the full decriminalisation of sex work to: Promote safe working conditions and labour rights for sex workers; Increase access to health services and reduce sex workers’ risk of HIV and STIs; Increase sex workers’ access to justice; Reduce police abuse and violence; Help to tackle exploitation and coercion when it does occur.
NSWP membership comprises 237 sex worker-led organisations in 71 countries across the globe, including local organisations as well as national and regional networks. Our regional networks in the Global South and Global North represent many thousands of sex workers who actively oppose the criminalisation and other legal oppression of sex work.