Role of intensive strategies to address stigma and discrimination among female sex workers

Role of intensive strategies to address stigma and discrimination among female sex workers.pdf

Karnataka Health Promotion Trust (KHPT) presented this poster at the 12th International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP12) in Dhaka, 12-14 March 2016. It presents an overview of Samvedana Plus, the intensive stigma reduction intervention being implemented in Karnataka, India.

This poster highlights the results of a study that explored respondents’ knowledge about the incidences of stigma and discrimination against positive female sex workers (FSWs) in general and within the healthcare settings.


Reduced number of FSWs witnessed isolation of their peers by family and friends

  • The study found a significant reduction, 87% to 34% from baseline to endline, in the proportion of FSWs, who faced stigma and discrimination from their friends and their family members
  • A lower proportion of sex workers at the endline reported exclusion from social gathering, fewer visits by family and friends, and isolation within the household and rejection from family and peers

Reduced number of FSWs witnessed acts of stigma & discrimination against their HIV positive peers

  • Post intervention, a significant proportion of FSWs witnessed other HIV positive sex workers experiencing much less physical and verbal abuse, neglect from family members and a loss of respect within their families and community
  • A significant reduction was reported at the endline on HIV positive FSWs being teased, gossiped about, being abandoned by their spouse and family members or their properties being taken away

Figure: Percentage of FSWs witnessed different acts of stigma and discrimination faced by other HIV positive FSWs in last 12 months

The intervention significantly changed the attitudes and behaviour of sex workers and their family member towards people living with HIV (PLHIV). Stigma and discrimination, within the community and healthcare settings, against PLHIV had reduced. Similar intervention activities, if found replicable and scalable, can be embedded in the national AIDS control and prevention programmes to increase the utilisation of HIV prevention, treatment and care services.

Filter by