Responding to the decision of South Africa’s Cabinet to propose a Bill that will repeal criminalisation of sex work, UNAIDS Country Director Eva Kiwango said:
“The evidence is clear: Criminalisation has been proven to have increased the risks faced by South Africa’s sex workers, hurt their health and safety, and obstructed South Africa’s HIV response.
UNAIDS welcomes South Africa’s Cabinet’s proposal to repeal criminalisation and to protect sex workers against abuse and exploitation.
Criminalisation has impeded South African sex workers’ access to vital health-care services, including effective HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services.
To end AIDS, we need to repeal the harmful punitive laws which are perpetuating the pandemic. To save lives, decriminalise.”
Note: The statement by South Africa’s Cabinet on their agreement to propose repeal of criminalisation is published at https://www.gov.za/speeches/statement-cabinet-meeting-30-november-2022-1-dec-2022-0000 under “Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Bill of 2022”. The Bill will now be published for public comment.
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