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Sex workers encourage condom use

Commemorating World AIDS Day, which fell on Saturday, Dec. 1, commercial sex workers and transvestites in Central Java promoted the use of condoms among their customers in a bid to help prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS.

In Semarang, prostitutes in the city’s biggest red light district Sunan Kuning (SK) conducted a competition to encourage customers to use condoms. The winner would be named the HIV/AIDS ambassador of the red light district.

Debating the right to sell sex in Switzerland

Switzerland is one of the most liberal countries when it comes to prostitution. Yet those who offer sexual services for payment do not have ordinary workers’ rights and the profession is still considered immoral.

To imagine a society without prostitution is utopian. Those who are willing to offer their own bodies in exchange for money must be allowed to do so without being stigmatised or punished. This is the view put forward by Terre des Femmes Switzerland, an organisation that campaigns for the rights of women.

A Regressive Move Which Would Further Stigmatise and Endanger Sex Workers

Last week Rhoda Grant MSP and Lord Morrow were invited to speak about their respective proposals to criminalise the purchase of sex in Scotland and Northern Ireland at an event in the House of Commons tellingly entitled 'Prostitution and Sexual Exploitation: Tackling Demand in the UK'.

These proposals represent a radical change to the criminal law in this area and, if passed, would have severe consequences for sex workers. They are not supported by public opinion, academic evidence, sex workers themselves or by the majority of those delivering front-line support to sex workers.

Making sex work safer in Switzerland

If sex work was treated like any other profession, many of the problems associated with it, including violence, could be easier to tackle according to Eva Büschi, a professor at the School of Social Work of the University of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland. 

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