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By Aliya on Jul 11th, 2010

There has never been a time, when fundraising for sex work projects was easy. Nonetheless, at Odyseus, we always had a few donors, who accepted (and even preferred) to support proposals that included services for sex workers. Since Slovakia joined the European Union, and even more specifically the Euro Zone, the situation started to change rapidly. As a result of the financial crises, funding diminished and with it, so did support for projects for sex workers and even more so, for advocacy for sex workers’ rights. Nowadays, we have very few, if any, options for funding to even apply for.

By Aliya on Jul 11th, 2010

On Saturday, May 29, 2010 the third and final generation of SWAN groups participated in a training on media sensitizations in Tirana, Albania. Genci and Enkelejda of Aksion Plus were gracious hosts in their beautiful city. Representative from sex work projects from Hungary, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Albania, Montenegro and Latvia participated in the one-day event which also brought together sex workers from Hungary, Albania and Bulgaria.

By Aliya on Jul 11th, 2010

June 3, 2010
By Anna-Louise Crago
Over all the ethical breaches and problems surrounding media representation of sex workers echoed those of previous SWAN groups who did the media sensitization trainings. The fact that Hungary has a legalized system with tolerance zones contributed new dynamics and issues to think about.

By Aliya on Apr 12th, 2010

Sex workers’ organizations across Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia used the opportunity of the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers to advocate SW’s rights. Below is a summary of the activities carried out be the organizations.

By Aliya on Dec 16th, 2009

The meeting brought together 32 participants from 16 countries with the aim to exchange experience, share problems and find solutions, renew and strengthen the partnership ties and get to know new network members better.

By Aliya on Dec 15th, 2009

Dear all:

To mark December 17, the International Day to End Violence against Sex Workers, the Sex Workers' Rights Advocacy Network (SWAN) of Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia is releasing its new report, Arrest the Violence: Human Rights Violations Against Sex Workers in 11 Countries in Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia. The report is based on interviews with more than 200 male, female and transgender sex workers between 2007 and 2009 and chillingly documents widespread violence and discrimination against them, particularly by state actors.

According to Rebecca Schleifer of Human Rights Watch’s Health and Human Rights Division:

Arrest the Violence is the first piece of research done under the leadership of sex workers to document human rights violations they face across Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Sex workers throughout the region report that they face verbal and physical abuse, including beatings, kidnapping, and sexual violence, by police and private citizens. Sex workers also report that police confiscated condoms as “evidence” of sex work, and subjected them to mandatory HIV testing.
These are not isolated incidents. The physical, sexual, and verbal violations of sex workers’ rights are part of a pattern of abuse by police and in the community that is documented throughout the region.
It is my sincere hope that this report will serve as a catalyst to awaken the broader human rights community to the importance of documenting and denouncing human rights abuses against sex workers, and working with sex workers to end these abuses.

To access the report, please follow the links below.
Questions or comments may be directed to SWAN@TASZ.HU.

Sincerely,
Aliya Rakhmetova
Coordinator Sex Workers’ Rights Advocacy Network (SWAN)

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By Guest on Sep 29th, 2009

C.A. Odyseus, SWAN member in Slovakia, has introduced a new element in their outreach services for street sex workers. Street cafeteria though still a novelty, has already proved to be a successful step in making social work more accessible and involving for sex workers.

By Aliya on Mar 29th, 2009

„More than 90% of people who are working on the streets are women, according to our latest survey” – said Lubica Tornoczyova, the team member of Odyseus in an interview which she gave to the most read weekly paper in Slovakia. The article introduces the activity of the Odyseus and SWAN, and emphasize that prostitution is definitelly not a dream job for anyone; people usually choose it as a „less evil” solution, instead of stealing or giving children away to childcare.

By Aliya on Feb 2nd, 2009

„Moju dobrú kamarátku na ulici niekto zavraždil. Milé dievča, mala iba devätnásť rokov. Mne sa stalo pár mesiacov predtým, že na mňa zákazník vytiahol nôž. Udala som ho na polícii, ale o dva dni ho prepustili,“ vyratúva skúsenosti z ulice Mária. Aj tak je presvedčená, že nahlásiť treba každý útok, opísať zákazníka, iba tak sa dá zabrániť ďalšiemu násiliu. Kým nastúpi do auta, dobre si všimne ečevéčko. „Ja viem, aké sú moje práva, nie som nevzdelaná nula,“ pokračuje s tým, že už podávala sťažnosť aj na počínanie policajtov.

By Aliya on Jan 26th, 2009

Sex work is work, and everyone has freedom to choose their work - was the message of this year’s December 17 campaign in Slovakia. Odyseus, SWAN member from Slovakia organized a month-long distribution of coasters and postcards with campaign messages in ten Slovakian towns.

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