Our commitment to self-determination means that we work to protect the autonomy of individual women, men, and other stakeholders in our organizations, including the right to self-organization and self-protection. We regularly engage with our members and local and global stakeholders. For example, we have undertaken group or individual briefings to provide update information to a community and to parliamentarians in various countries. We have also given opportunities to speak to the media in response to negative and potentially harmful publicity surrounding our members. More generally, we work to ensure that our values present a positive and responsible face to our diverse audience in different settings. For example, we have debated and disseminated pre- and post-event information about our Meetings. We have addressed incidents of criminal and non-criminal discrimination that have occurred in venues where sex workers perform in public.
Our policies and practices on governmental obligations: The common belief that the sex industry is victim to the practice of criminalization creates a form of reactive passivity among those who treat it as inevitable, and thereby prevents and legitimates the perpetuation of the criminalization of sex work.
Our organisations were incorporated as charitable (or ‘third party’) organizations to ensure their positions as self-regulatory bodies for the sex industry. We operate in the knowledge that the laws governing prostitution are criminal and that anyone engaging in sex work will be faced with police action and arrest. Despite this, we believe those working in the sex industry are fundamentally different from the women who are arrested for prostitution, trafficked to work in the sex industry and those who are exploited in other forms of trafficking into the sex industry.
The threat of criminalization has the effect of pushing those who are engaged in the sex industry to rely on the protection of the state and to criminalise sexuality and its expression. In terms of sex workers, this risks isolating and silencing them, particularly in areas of the world where the sexual expression of women is still either prohibited or restricted. d2c66b5586