Globally, sex workers continue to be disproportionately affected by HIV. Recent studies have confirmed the high prevalence of HIV amongst sex workers, yet policies and programmes often fail to address the many factors that affect positive sex workers’ access to HIV treatment, care, and support.
NSWP+ is a platform for HIV positive sex workers and people committed to treatment access and equal rights for sex workers living with HIV. We have launched this special platform within NSWP to campaign for the rights of HIV positive sex workers and to bring our issues, alongside the energy and glamour of the sex worker movement to the wider treatment activist movement.
NSWP+ was formed during the Sex Worker Freedom Festival in 2012, when a group of positive sex workers came together and demanded recognition that ‘sex workers are not the problem, but part of the solution’.
As a platform for all those committed to defending the rights of sex workers living with HIV, NSWP+ now also exists to share information and to communicate the demands and needs of sex workers living with HIV. These original demands are set out below. Sex workers will campaign alongside treatment activists and other key affected populations to defend the human rights of sex workers to appropriate HIV treatment, care, and support.
To date, existing regional networks include Asia Pacific Network of Positive Sex workers Living (APNSW+) and the African Positive Sex Workers Alliance (ASWA+).
- We demand the right to work in all sectors, including as sex workers or any sector of the sex industry!
- We demand not to be last in line for treatment or refused treatment because we are sex workers, this extends to our children and our families!
- We demand that treatment is matched to the patient and not the patient matched to available drugs!
- We demand not to be used as guinea pigs in trials without our informed consent!
- We demand better and affordable ARVs and Diagnostics!
- We demand that the drug companies in the West stop trying to kill us through their attacks on developing countries' rights to manufacture, export and import generic ARVs!
- We demand to be included in the treatment activist movement, our voices matter too!
- We demand access to information that allows us to join the campaign against Free Trade Agreements and Intellectual Property Rights!
- We demand a place at the table in all discussions about HIV policy and programming for sex workers!
As HIV+ sex workers, we demand the right to look fabulous!