Caribbean sex workers speak out about discrimination and violence
Time has shown that once a person is engaged in sex work,then the chances of being stigmatized and discriminated are much higher because of deeply held beliefs and practices about acceptable behaviours and lifestyles.
According to the UNAIDS, stigma and discrimination are both causes and consequences of HIV and impede universal access to prevention, care, treatment and support.
It is for these reasons that sex workers are among the highest risk groups more vulnerable to HIV infection and are not considered as vectors of the virus.
A just concluded workshop by the Caribbean Sex Work Coalition saw members of the population brainstorming ways to better protect their rights as human beings.
According to the participants stigma and discrimination along with violence are experiences they have in common. Aside from Guyana participants from five other countries were here to be a part of the workshop.
The Caribbean Sex Worker Coalition is a network of sex workers organizations with membership from the English, Dutch and Spanish speaking countries in the region.
In Guyana sex work is illegal but it remains a widespread practice, particularly among women, men and members of the LGBT community.