STOPAIDS sex-worker factsheet and resources

STOPAIDS Factsheet Sex work, HIV and human rights.pdf

Sex workers constitute a ‘key population’ in HIV prevention. High HIV prevalence rates among sex workers worldwide – see STOPAIDSreport on key populations and inequalities – present a formidable barrier to slowing the epidemic. Conversely, sex workers are vital partners in prevention efforts.

STOPAIDS held a workshop in March 2015 on sex work in relation to health and the global HIV response. Following the workshop, STOPAIDS prepared this factsheet in part to guide organisations to develop strategies. It contains brief summaries of:

  • the birth of the sex-worker movement
  • sex work and HIV
  • the relationship between the criminalisation of sex work, violence and HIV
  • an ideological approach at the expense of sex workers’ rights
  • decriminalisation: a rights-based approach with a positive health impact
  • health programming with sex workers

STOPAIDS members are engaging SWs in programming efforts, as the factsheet outlines. Key evidence and guidelines highlighted here and in the workshop report can be used to encourage further dialogue amongst STOPAIDS members and beyond, contributing to the huge advocacy efforts of the global sex-worker rights movement.

Sex worker implementation tool

STOPAIDS produced a sex worker implementation tool (SWIT) in consultation with sex workers for implementation at a grassroots level and with sex worker leadership. The tool focuses on  influence by sex worker-led networks on HIV policy at national, regional and international levels. As a fundamental part of the HIV response, the SWIT emphasises the need for sex work to be decriminalised and for sex workers to be empowered.

Sex worker implementation tool

Structure of the SWIT tool. Source: Implementing comprehensive HIV/STI programmes with sex workers: practical approaches from collaborative interventions.


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