Resources: Sex Work, Migration, & Mobility

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54/158. International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families

The General Assembly,

Reaffirming once more the permanent validity of the principles and norms set forth in the basic
instruments regarding the international protection of human rights, in particular the Universal Declaration
of Human Rights, the International Covenants on Human Rights, the International Convention on the
Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of

This paper critically examines the current strategies employed by both governmental and non-governmental agencies (NGO's) to address the issue, focusing on their impact on the women affected. The guidiing principle is that anti-trafficking instruments should not only be in line with the protection of human rights, but should also care not to create or exacerbate existing situations that cuase or contribute to trafficking by instituting policies and practices that further undermine the rights of the concerned groups, in particular women.

This paper includes sections on:

This paper tries to give an impetus to further explore the meaning of a human rights based approach in the field of trafficking.

This article focuses on the existing legal approaches to prostitution, the moral and ideological presumptions underlying the different legislative models and their impact on the working and living conditions of women and men working in the sex industry. It will also touch on the current debate on sex work, including the views of sexworkers themselves. Basically, four different legal regimes can be discerned - prohibitionist, abolitionist, regulamentarist, and labour approaches.

This fact sheet published by the US government discusses it's rationale for it's position against legalized prostitution - it is based on evidence that prostitution is inherently harmful and dehumanizing, and fuels trafficking in persons, a form of modern-day slavery. Prostitution and related activites fuel the growth of modern-day slavery by providing a facade behind which traffickers for sexual exploitation operate.

Letter to the U. S. Department of State. This letter, signed by nine researchers from around the globe and addressed to Ambassador John Miller, provides a response to the facts listed in the Department of State's Fact Sheet on Prostitution and Trafficking, released in 2004. In this letter, the signatories discuss the problems with the fact sheet and it's conclusions,

Contents includes:
• Quoted statistics on numbers and types of persons trafficked that cannot be confirmed in legitimate studies of trafficking.

The Annotated Guide to the new UN Trafficking Protocol is a tool to assist advocates in the development of a human rights framework for national anti-trafficking laws and policies. In December 2000, the UN adopted international instruments to fight transnational organized crime and additional agreements or protocols to combat trafficking in persons, smuggling and firearms.

Recommended Principles and Guidelines on Human Rights
and Human Trafficking
Report of the United Nations High Commissioner for
Human Rights to the Economic and Social Council.

You can download this 16 page PDF resource above. This resource is in English.

This article examines national news reports on prostitution of Russian women in northern Norway between 1990 and 2001. Applying critical discourse analysis, the author shows how this particular type of cross-border, rural prostitution is represented as sexual transaction, as a sociopolitical problem (of public order, public health, social/moral breakdown and stigma), and as a symbolic issue used to legitimize stricter border controls. Images of prostitutes, pimps and customers are also discussed.

One might think that there would be no objections to reaching out to help trafficked persons. However, as this interview with Jo Doezema of the Network of Sex Work Projects reveals, even well-intended efforts to help one group can sometimes cause harm to another group. In this case, attempts to rescue trafficked girls from brothels can trample on the rights of voluntary sex workers. In addition, some groups inappropriately label all sex workers as trafficked persons, believing mistakenly that no one would willingly enter or stay in this occupation.