(formerly known as "Women Arise for Change")
Who do you work with?:
Organization For Gender Empowerment and Rights Advocacy is a female sex worker-led organization that exists to advocate, promote recognition and acceptance, and defend the health and human rights of bisexual, lesbian and refugee sex workers in Uganda. We only work with adult female sex workers who are refugees, bisexuals and lesbians plus other identified partners.
How are sex workers involved in your organisation?:
All members, staff and two representatives on our board are sex workers and as such they are involved in leadership, planning and decision making. They are also beneficiaries since they receive services such as referrals to access free health and legal services, trainings and English literacy for the refugee sex workers.
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:
Rape,harassment and arrests. -Sex workers are arrested on a daily basis and sometimes end up being raped before taken to police posts and this leads to unwanted pregnancies, STIs and HIV infections. -Stigma and Discrimination - This leads to lack of access to treatment due to unfriendly health service providers and also the fact that some are refuges,they face a problem of communication due to language barrier.
Describe other areas of your work:
Human rights and advocacy, capacity building, research and documentation, networking and partnerships, outreach programs, economic empowerment, referrals, monitoring and evaluation.