Regional updates: Africa

Our members are listed on the left or you can click the red umbrellas on the map.

Regional Board Members

Phelister Abdalla (KESWA), Kenya

Patrick Fotso (Alcondoms Cameroun), Cameroon

Regional Network

The African Sex Workers Alliance (ASWA) is a pan-African network of sex worker-led national networks and national and local organisations led by and/or working with female, male and transgender sex workers. It was formed in 2009 by sex workers and women’s activists and non-governmental organisations and is now based in Nairobi, Kenya.

News articles from Africa region are listed below.

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Coalition Afrique de l’Ouest et du Centre pour le travail du sexe (CAfOC-TS) have issued a statement reporting on the human rights abuses and violence experienced by sex workers during the COVID-19 pandemic in francophone African countries.

CAfOC-TS – which is made up of organisations including UMANDE, And Soppeku, Blety, AFAZ - Association Femme Amazone, Alcondoms Cameroun, YERELON+, and HODSAS – work to address the problems faced by French speaking sex workers in Central and West Africa.

1st September 2020 by NSWP

New Frame have written a feature on the impact of COVID-19 on sex workers in South Africa, looking specifically at the damaging impacts of criminalisation and the need to maintain a focus on the long-term policy changes that position sex workers as equal and protected citizens.

20th August 2020 by NSWP

AP News has published a report on the impact of food insecurity during the COVID-19 pandemic on sex workers living with HIV. Speaking with sex workers and organisations from Rwanda and Zimbabwe, the article highlights the multiple ways that the current crisis is affecting those who do not have access to government support schemes.

21st July 2020 by NSWP

Last week, the Uganda Key Populations Consortium (UKPC) and other civil society organisations released a statement strongly denouncing raids, arrests, extortion, and violent attacks targeting sex workers, barmaids and other vulnerable communities by police, Local Defense Units (LDUs), and Resident District Commissioners (RDCs) during the response to the spread of COVID-19.

11th May 2020 by NSWP

At the end of February, the second case of COVID-19 was documented in an African country. Since then, the disease has spread to every region, resulting in nearly 32,000 confirmed cases and around 1,400 deaths.

Sex workers in Senegal, in western Africa, are struggling within the context of the pandemic, which has exposed existing inequalities and disproportionately affects people already criminalised, marginalised and living in financially precarious situations.

27th April 2020 by NSWP

NSWP is seeking to recruit a Policy Officer to join our Policy Team, led by the Senior Policy Officer, working on developing global advocacy tools for our members and reviewing external policy documents in line with the NSWP Consensus Statement and the priorities set by the NSWP Board.

3rd April 2020 by NSWP

Sex workers are calling for more prevention and sensitisation work during the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo, following the recent death of a sex worker in Eastern DRC. 

20th August 2019 by NSWP

Sex worker organisations and other human rights groups have condemned the arrest and violent mistreatment of women by police, who arrested more than 100 women at nightclubs in Abuja last week. It has been reported the women were arrested under sex work laws, although many of the women deny being sex workers.

6th May 2019 by NSWP

The South African Government is considering a policy on decriminalisation of sex work, according to President Ramaphosa. The President told a number of organisations at an event last week that the government would: "finalize the outstanding legislation such as the prevention and combating [of] hate crime, the hate crime bill and victim support services. We will work with all stakeholders to develop policy around the decriminalization of sex work."

2nd April 2019 by NSWP