The Smart Sex Worker’s Guide to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women

The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) is one of the world’s major human rights treaties. It is often described as “an international bill of rights for women” and its focus is on achieving gender equality. CEDAW, therefore, creates a number of different obligations that States must comply with in order to combat discrimination against women. While people of all genders sell sex, the majority of sex workers are women and sex work is often regarded in the arenas of law and policy as a ‘women’s rights issue’. This makes CEDAW an important human rights treaty for sex workers’ rights activists; the aim of this Smart Guide is to explore how the Convention can be used to advance the rights of women sex workers.

Links to the full guide:

English

Indonesian

THE SMART PERSON'S GUIDE TO HIV AND SEX WORK (NSPW, 2010)

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This booklet outlines what sex workers around the world want, and explains why successful HIV interventions are ones that reduce the impact of adverse laws, policies, stigma, violence, and discrimination.

The role of sex workers in HIV epidemics is hotly debated. While HIV prevalence is high amongst sex workers in some areas, in others it is relatively low. However, sex workers face unfavourable laws, stigma, violence, and discrimination to varying degrees all over the world. The consequences of this discrimination is vulnerability to ill health, social exclusion and human rights violations.

CONSENSUS STATEMENT ON SEX WORK, HUMAN RIGHTS, AND THE LAW - SUMMARY (NSWP, 2013)

The Consensus Statement is a tool for sex workers’ advocacy worldwide, which summarises the demands of the global sex worker rights movement. The Consensus Statement outlines eight basic human rights that sex worker-led groups around the world identify as crucial targets for their activism and advocacy.

These eight rights, if fully realised, would be a huge step towards safeguarding sex workers’ human rights, labour rights, and health:

  1. The right to associate and organise;

  2. The right to be protected by the law;

  3. The right to be free from violence;

  4. The right to be free from discrimination;

  5. The right to privacy, and freedom from arbitrary interference;

  6. The right to health;

  7. The right to move and migrate; and

  8. The right to work and free choice of employment.

Link to the full Consensus Statement:

English

English Summary

Indonesian

THE SMART SEX WORKERS GUIDE TO SUSTAINABLE FUNDING (NSPW, 2015)

This guide contains practical information on funding strategies for sex worker organisations. It discusses developing a funding strategy, financial management, grants and applying for funding, and community-based fundraising. Funding for sex work programs should be directed toward rights-based programmes that respond to the needs prioritised by sex workers. Social and economic justice for sex workers requires an equitable share of resources and meaningful engagement about the allocation of resources.

ANTIRETROVIRAL THERAPY (ART) - WHAT SEX WORKERS SHOULD KNOW (APNSW, 2015)

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This four page fact sheet summarises the key ART recommendations and their relevancy to sex workers in based on the World Health Organization  ‘Consolidated Guidelines on HIV prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care for key populations.'Sex workers are disproportionately affected by HIV and often face more barriers than other people in access to HIV-related services. Criminalisation of sex work inhibits sex workers from being open about their work, including with health care providers. Stigma and discrimination in health care settings impact on diagnosis and treatment, and discourage return visits. This means sex workers often present late for HIV treatment - also known as antiretroviral therapy (ART).

THE SMART SEX WORKER'S GUIDE TO SWIT (NSWP, 2015)

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The Sex Workers Implementation Tool (SWIT) is the short title for the World Health Organisation's most recent guidelines on implementing comprehensive HIV/STI programmes with sex workers. The guidelines cover community empowerment, addressing violence against sex workers, community-led services, condom and lubricant programming, clinical and support services, and program management.