Malawi prostitutes to form alliance

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Pakachere Institute of Health and Development Communication (PIHDC) will launch a national wide alliance of sex workers in Malawi on November 7, 2012 in Lilongwe.

The alliance will help sex workers share and discuss issues affecting their day to day lives.

Speaking Thursday to Malawi News Agency, PIHDC Executive Director, Simon Sikwese, said the alliance is targeting all sex workers across the country and that it’s is one of the forums aimed at ensuring that sex workers rights are protected.

“Sex Workers Alliance is the first of its kind here in Malawi and launching it here doesn’t mean that we are legalizing prostitution, “Sikwese said.

However, the programme wants sex workers to be in groups where they have to teach one another on their right to reproductive health and security.

“Above all this alliance will help sex workers to encourage one another to visit hospitals whenever they feel something is wrong in their bodies. Suppose some of their rights are violated, they have to know where they can take the matter to.

“PIHDC is doing all these in trying to reduce the HIV prevalence which is growing each and every day,” said Sikwese.

Sikwese said his organization has also embarked on a new project which is targeting mobile populations like truck drivers.

He said through this programme, truck drivers are being equipped with peer education so that they can discuss among themselves whenever they meet at the border or any place.

“PIHDC will distribute print materials at the boarder or any place where the drivers stay long time before their departure.

“Drivers are at high risk of contacting HIV/AIDS though currently we do not have their prevalence rate in the country,” said Sikwese.

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