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PUBLICATIONS: SHARP and LAHI Report from Johannesburg Meeting

The Sexual Health and Rights Project (SHARP) and the Law and Health Initiative (LAHI) of the Open Society Institute have recently published an online report from a meeting entitled “Fostering Enabling Legal and Policy Environments for Sex Workers’ Health and Rights” that was held in Johannesburg last year. This gathering brought together sex workers, service providers, human rights advocates, researchers and government representatives from around the globe to discuss how different legal and regulatory environments affect sex workers' health and rights. The meeting was organized in part to address the growing backlash against human rights-based responses to sex worker health and rights concerns, and to strengthen connections between sex worker health and rights advocates who are leading these efforts.

“We hope the report and resource materials are a valuable tool to assist sex workers, allied communities, donors and others forge a common understanding of key health and social justice issues; identify common goals and priorities; and mobilize around targeted advocacy campaigns to achieve sex workers' health and rights” – said Sue Simon, the Director of the SHARP.

The report is published on here and contains the following resources:


The Johannesburg Report (synthesis of the debates and areas of substantial agreement that emerged over the course of the meeting)
Appendix A (panel summaries)
Appendix B (meeting concept paper)
Appendix C (case studies from India, Australia, South Africa, Thailand, Canada, Netherlands, Brazil and Senegal examining the intersections of law, policy, rights and health related to sex work)
Appendix D (discussion paper reviewing how harm reduction and human rights frameworks have been applied to sex workers' health and rights concerns)
Appendix E (provisional framework mapping some of the laws and policies that affect sex workers' health and rights)
Appendix F (list of key health and human rights issues identified by meeting participants as requiring further research and documentation)
Appendix G (meeting agenda)
Appendix H (participant biographies)
Appendix I (description of meeting organizers)


In addition to that, “Sex Worker Health and Rights: Where is the Funding?" – an OSI report assessing existing funding for sex worker health and rights organizations and recommendations for donors about how to promote a rights-based approach through their support – is available here in English and Russian.

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