A number of sex worker organisations in Asia and the Pacific submitted responses to UN Women's online “Consultation seeking views on UN Women approach to sex work, the sex trade and prostitution” between 8th September and 31st October 2016. (The initial deadline of 16th October was extended by two weeks.) Some organisations contributed individually and others as part of joint submissions. Despite the very short time-frame, and lack of any warning, some networks were able to organise face-to-face consultations with sex worker groups to participate in compiling a response. All India Network of Sex Workers and partners organised three regional consultations in eastern, western and southern regions of India, gathering input from 43 sex worker led community-based organisations. Sex Workers and Allies South Asia (SWASA) and partners organised a consultation attended by participants from India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka including 55 community-led organisations.The full submissions from across the region can be read through the following links:
All India Network of Sex Workers (together with CREA, CFAR and Lawyers Collective, and 43 community-based organisations)
Scarlet Alliance (together with Rose Alliance, ICW and INWUD)
Sex Worker Allies South Asia (in consultation with 55 sex worker collectives and 25 supporting organisations across four South Asian countries). SWASA also produced a short video featuring participants at the consultation meeting (also linked below).
APNSW Secretariat also contributed to a response from Unzip the Lips, an advocacy platform of key affected women and girls in Asia and the Pacific of which APNSW is a member.
APNSW signed and endorsed:
the joint global submission from 86 sex worker rights, women's rights and human rights organisations.
In the region and around the world there have also been many other responses to UN Women in support of sex workers rights, both from sex workers and allies.The Asia Pacific Alliance for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (APA) submitted a response in partnership with Asia Catalyst and SWASTI. And responses from Amnesty International and Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women are available on nswp.org.
The online petition to UN Women will remain open until UN Women meaningfully includes sex workers in the development of the policy.