History of the Sex Worker Rights Movement

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The HIV and Sex Work Collection: Innovative Responses in Asia and the Pacific Launched


Launched in 2012, ‘The HIV and Sex Work Collection: Innovative Responses in Asia and the Pacific’ is a collection of case studies highlighting the work undertaken by sex worker-led community based organisations and networks in undertaking HIV related advocacy efforts. The collection, which was the result of a collaboration between UNFPA, UNAIDS and the Asia Pacific Network of Sex Workers (APNSW), specifically focuses on 11 APNSW member organisations from across a diverse range of countries within the Asia and Pacific region, including Myanmar, India, China, Thailand, Nepal and Fiji.

The Rights(s) Evidence: Sex Work, Violence and HIV Research Initiative Receives Robert Carr Research Award


The inaugural Robert Carr Research Award was presented to a consortium of 6 partners who collaborated on producing the research report, ‘The Rights(s) Evidence: Sex Work, Violence and HIV’. The multi-country qualitative study, which was instigated in 2011, involved a partnership between the Asia and Pacific Regional Offices of 3 United Nations agencies, (UNAIDS, UNFPA and UNDP), the Asia and Pacific Network of Sex Workers (APNSW), the Center for Advocacy on Stigma and Marginalisation (CASAM),and Partners for Prevention (P4P).

The National Needs Assessment for Sex Workers Living with HIV


In 2008, Scarlet Alliance, the Australian Sex Worker’s Association, undertook a national needs assessment research project to identify the systemic barriers impacting on HIV-positive sex workers. The needs assessment was coordinated by a self-disclosed HIV-positive sex worker, Kane Matthews.

Transgender Sex Worker Has Gender Recognised as ‘Non-Specific’


In 2010, a media-savvy Sydney-based trans*sex worker and community activist, Norrie May-Welby, initiated court proceedings against the New South Wales (NSW) Government Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages to have their gender recognised as ‘non-specific’ on official documents.

Sou Sotheavy Receives David Kato Vision and Voice Award


Self-disclosed HIV positive Cambodian trans* sex worker, Sou Sotheavy, was awarded the 2014 David Kato Vision and Voice Award for the activism she has undertaken over the past 3 decades in advocating for the rights of sex workers and the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Trans*, Intersex and Queer (GLBTIQ) communities.

EMPOWER Foundation Wins Red Ribbon Award

10 Jun

Thailand’s national network for women sex workers, the EMPOWER Foundation, was awarded the 2008 Red Ribbon Award by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the United Nations Joint Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). The UN laurel, which is presented every 2 years to 25 international organizations that example dedication and community leadership in addressing issues surrounding HIV/AIDS, announced the EMPOWER Foundation as one of its recipients on 10 June, 2008.