Regional updates: Asia and the Pacific

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

Regional Board Members

Manjula Ramaiah (ASHODAYA SAMITHI), India

Sherry Sherqueshaa (Project X), Singapore

Regional Network

The Asia Pacific Network of Sex Workers (APNSW) is a sex worker-led network whose members include national sex worker-led networks, sex worker-led organisations and community-based sex work projects representing female, male and transgender sex workers. APNSW was founded in 1994 at the International AIDS Conference in Japan and is based in Bangkok, Thailand.

News articles from Asia and the Pacific region are listed below.

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In late 2015 the Red Umbrella Fund announced they would provide funding to $carlet Timor Collective in Timor-Leste for advocacy on human rights, capacity building, training, and health services for sex workers.

21st March 2016 by NSWP

Fourteen sex workers were arrested on the 24th of January in Cambodia, and taken to the infamous ‘rehabilitation’ centre known locally as Prey Speu.

This makes a total of 289 sex workers arrested in the last 13 months, according to the Cambodian sex workers’ union Women’s Network for Unity (WNU). These are only the cases WNU have been able to document. “Many others have been routinely arrested that we can’t capture in our outreach and program activities”, says WNUs’ Managing Director Samara Shehata.

29th January 2016 by NSWP

The closing, and reopening, of brothels and red light districts in Indonesia has been happening for many years. Several brothel areas were closed in high profile operations across the country in 2015. A closure in Papua was attended by the national Minister for Social Affairs as she launched a “national anti-prostitution movement.”

29th December 2015 by NSWP

Seventeen representatives of sex worker organisations in South Asia, Central Asia and Eastern Europe took part in a training workshop organised by the Asia Pacific Network of Sex Workers (APNSW) in Siem Reap, Cambodia from 5-10 December, 2015. The workshop was part of series designed specifically for sex workers, to build the knowledge and ability of NSWP members to engage and work with The Global Fund mechanisms in their countries.

14th December 2015 by NSWP

The Asia Pacific Network of Sex Workers (APNSW) has written a letter of support to Amnesty International. Amnesty is under intense pressure from anti-sex work campaigners for their proposals to support the call for the decriminalisation of sex work. APNSW is a sex worker-led regional network that promotes the health and human rights of female, male and transgender sex workers. APNSW represents 31 organizations in 23 countries.

10th August 2015 by NSWP

Empower Foundation, the Thai sex worker organisation has written a letter of support to Amnesty International.

7th August 2015 by NSWP

In an effort to network, build solidarity, increase understanding and contribute towards greater tolerance between the Singaporean sex worker and Muslim communities, Project X, Singapore’s sex worker advocacy network, invited a prominent Muslim speaker, Mr. Mohamed Imran, to a weekly sex worker discussion group, Kopi Session.

30th July 2015 by NSWP

Australian sex workers in the state of Victoria have formalised the program for the 2015 Festival of Sex Work.

22nd July 2015 by NSWP

Australian sex worker network and NSWP member Scarlet Alliance published their report: ‘Stepping up to the evidence on HIV and Sex Work: Decriminalise Sex Work Now! Sex Workers at AIDS 2014’ last week. This much anticipated report demonstrates the strong sex worker presence at the 20th International AIDS Conference - AIDS 2014 in Melbourne, July 2014.

20th July 2015 by NSWP

On 21-23 April, 2015, Nepalese sex workers, drug users and Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trans*,Intersex and Queer (GLBTIQ) people engaged in a 3 day Treatment Literacy Training program, undertaken as part of an International Treatment Preparedness Coalition (ITPC) initiative. Thirty peer representatives from Nepal’s national peer networks, Jagriti Mahila Maha Sangh (JMMS), the Federation of Female Sex Workers in Nepal, the Blue Diamond Society, and the National Users Network of Nepal (NUNN), participated in the training. This is was the second ITPC training program held in the Nepali capital of Kathmandu in 2015. The first program was held 26 - 28 January, 2015. Both training programs have been facilitated by NUNN.

15th June 2015 by NSWP