News Archive: November 2013

French lawmakers will vote on Wednesday (4th December) whether to implement a law that penalises the clients of sex workers. Legislators are proposing sanctions, including incremental fines and ultimately up to 6 months in prison for repeat ‘offenders’. The proposed legislation has as its basis the controversial ‘Swedish Model’ which incorrectly purports to ‘decriminalise’ sex workers whilst criminalising clients. The model attempts to ‘end demand’ for sexual services which proponents of the Swedish Model argue leads to increased violence against women and human trafficking. The proposals are ideologically driven rather than evidence-based and incorrectly views sex work through the prism of ‘violence against women’ whilst also irresponsibly conflating trafficking with sex work. The consultation process and proposals excluded the voices of current sex workers and the sex worker rights organisations that advocate for a rights-based approach to policy and legislation.

The French proposals for the criminalisation of clients is not a human rights-based response to sex work. NSWP stands in solidarity with sex workers and sex workers’ rights organisations in France in opposing these proposals to criminalise the clients of sex workers.

You can download the full statement as a 3 page PDF in English below.

29 November 2013

A new report launched recently by the Open society Foundation (OSF) examines how legal empowerment projects for various marginalised groups (including sex workers) have changed access to health services.

27 November 2013

A new report that looks at the intersectionality of sex work and drug use was launched at the 11th National Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP11).

26 November 2013

The WHO, UNFPA, UNAIDS, NSWP and The World Bank launched the new World Health Organization sex work and HIV implementation tool (SWIT) at ICAAP11 yesterday, to a packed room of sex worker rights advocates and policymakers from around the region and the world.

21 November 2013

Germany has formed its first professional association of sex workers to lobby and fight for the rights of sex workers as well as improve their lives and working conditions.

In an interview with Spiegel Online, Johanna Weberb, the founder of the association, said that the association caters to different sex workers working in different fields.

18 November 2013

Following reports that the Botswana Government is planning to target, arrest and possibly deport sex workers in the country, several human rights organisations have come out to strongly condemn this move.

The AIDS and Rights Alliance for Southern Africa (ARASA) and the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network, in a statement, strongly denounced this campaign and called for an end of the campaign.

13 November 2013

On 4 November, the UNAIDS Reference Group on HIV and Human Rights (Reference Group) launched its new website, containing all the Reference Group’s statements, papers, and recommendations since its first meeting in 2002. The Reference Group is an independent, advisory group that advises the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) on all matters relating to human rights, law and HIV.

12 November 2013

A new publication launched by several global HIV networks highlights the realities of accessing HIV drugs and other essential medicines for key populations globally.

12 November 2013

South Africa’s President, Jacob Zuma, in a response to Parliament, has pledged his continued support for the decriminalisation of sex work. The decriminalisation of sex work will remain on the agenda of the newly appointed SA Law Reform Commission (SALRC), President Zuma said earlier this week, reported News 24, a South Africa based news agency.

11 November 2013

Sex workers, men who have sex with men and truck drivers in Benin will benefit from a new US$68.8 million in new HIV grants from the Global Fund, it has been reported.

The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria signed the grant with the Benin Government in mid-October in an event in Cotonou attended by Benin’s Health Minister, Dorothée Kinde Gazard, and the Global Fund’s Director for Africa and the Middle East, Lelio Marmora.

11 November 2013

December 1st (World AIDS Day) heralds GNP+ (the Global Network of People Living with HIV) opening both conference registration and it's call for abstracts.

Conference registration is for AIDS2014. You can find out more, and register, here. Delegates are encouraged to register by 20 February 2014 to benefit from discounted rates.

11 November 2013

A documentary highlighting how Greece arrested - and exposed sex workers in the media - has been released. as new legislation that allows forced HIV testing on suspected sex workers is reinstated.

11 November 2013

Media reports from several African countries indicate that sex workers are being unfairly targeted by authorities causing concern to sex workers rights activists across the region.

Reports from Ghana and Botswana show that police have been arresting sex workers and in some instances deporting some of them.

7 November 2013