Texto en inglés
Last week, the U.S. government made history by condemning violence and discrimination against sex workers—for the first time ever.*
At a recent United Nations evaluation of the United States’ human rights record (the Universal Periodic Review of the U.N. Human Rights Council), the international community gave the U.S. more than 200 recommendations to improve its human rights record. Uruguay specifically called on the Obama administration to “undertake awareness-raising campaigns, campaigns for combating stereotypes and violence against gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people, and ensure access to public services by paying attention to the special vulnerability of sexual workers to violence and human rights abuses.”
Led by the efforts of a new group called Human Rights for All: Concerned Advocates for the Rights of Sex Works and People in the Sex Trade (HRA), CHANGE helped mobilize more than 125 organizations to join forces in a sign-on letter urging U.S. State Department officials to accept Uruguay’s recommendation.
These advocacy efforts translated into a significant victory. Last week, the U.S. released a report to the U.N. affirming that “*no one should face violence or discrimination in access to public services based on sexual orientation or their status as a person in prostitution*.”
For the U.S. government, this is a groundbreaking step forward in working to end stigma and discrimination against LGBT individuals and sex workers and to ensure their access to critical health services.
However, there is much more work to be done. The U.S. anti-prostitution pledge
is still in place—a policy that requires all organizations that receive global HIV/AIDS funding to explicitly oppose prostitution. This policy makes it extremely difficult to provide much-needed health services to women, men,
and transgender people in the sex sector. Advocates can now point to the U.S. government’s statement in their efforts to remove this discriminatory policy from U.S. global HIV/AIDS funding.
Senior Associate for Advocacy and Outreach
*Center for Health and Gender Equity* | 1317 F St. NW, Suite 400,
Washington, DC 20004 |