The ‘rights’ and trafficked exploitations of sexual labour – new call for papers.

A fresh perspective is being called for by the Anti Trafficking Review, convened by Dr Annalee Lepp – the chair of the Women’s Studies department at the University of Victoria and co-founder and current director of the Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women Canada. Dr Lepp deploys a human rights centric, “do no harm” approach to research and advocacy. This is an opportunity for members of the CCARHT academic community to add their voice to this current debate which should include in our view engagement with Julie Bindel’s comprehensive tour of many of the hot spots of Global commercialised sex in ‘the Pimping of Prostitution’, alongside cognisance of the recent articles and moves cited in the call of the Lancet publication in 2014 positing the relationship between ‘decriminalisation of prostitution’ and a fall in the prevalence in communities working with this policy of HIV, and the 2015 – 2016 call by Amnesty International to ‘decriminalise sex work’.
Be good to hear from some of our community as to who is bringing some fresh perspectives in this most contested of arenas which represents part of the long shadow of Human Trafficking abuse and financial ‘opportunities’ for organised and various degrees of dis ‘organised’ crime today.
Blog-style pieces of 1000-1200 words, which are relevant to the issue theme are being encouraged.
Anti-Trafficking Review
Sex Work
Guest Editor: Annalee Lepp
Deadline for Submissions: 8 July 2018
The Anti-Trafficking Review calls for papers for a themed issue entitled ‘Sex Work’.
The relationship between sex work and human trafficking remains one of the most contentious issues in both the sex worker rights and anti-trafficking worlds, and there is much community-based and academic literature written on this topic. While the arguments often appear at an impasse, there have been several important developments in recent years. In 2014, an issue of The Lancet showed that decriminalisation of sex work could drastically reduce the prevalence of HIV; in 2015/2016, Amnesty International urged states to decriminalise sex work as the only way to ensure the rights and wellbeing of sex workers; and, in 2018, the Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women published a study that called for the recognition of sex worker organisations’ longstanding work in addressing working conditions, including violence and exploitation, in the sex industry. Yet, in the same period, several countries in the global North adopted the ‘Swedish model’ of criminalising clients of sex workers as an anti-trafficking measure, while the European Parliament adopted a resolution in support of the same. This disconnect between evidence and policy prompts us to revisit the issue of sex work through a new angle.
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This thematic issue will seek to push the conversation about sex work and sex workers organising beyond the old debates of sex work being/not being trafficking or the best policy to ensure the rights and wellbeing of those involved in sex work. Starting from the standpoint of diverse sex worker communities (with full attention to Indigenous, racialised, transgender, male, and migrant sex workers working in a multiplicity of sectors) and sex worker organisations, the main focus will be to assess the current landscape with respect to the movement towards sex workers’ rights globally.
Contributors are invited to engage with, but need not limit themselves to, the following questions:
  • What is the role of sex worker organising in the advancement of sex workers’ rights? What factors facilitate organising among sex workers and what factors impede it?
  • Within current national and international contexts, have there been successes or successful alliances in the sex worker rights arena? What facilitates such alliances and what hinders them?
  • What is the role of sex worker organising in preventing and addressing exploitation in the sex industry, including human trafficking?
  • How is ‘exploitation’ being conceptualised by sex workers and sex worker organisations and is this conceptualisation consistent or incompatible with discussions of sexual exploitation in the anti-trafficking world? How is ‘exploitation’ being taken up by the labour rights movement and the decent work agenda?
  • What, if any, are the similarities between sex work and other informal labour sectors, such domestic work, in terms of individuals’ decisions to work in one or more of these sectors, working conditions, and other factors? What can one movement learn from the other in terms of strategies to claim rights and address violence and exploitation?
  • To what extent has the success of the ‘Swedish model’ relied on adopting or appropriating the language of rights as articulated by the global sex worker rights movement?
  • What effect, if any, is the rise of conservative and nationalistic politics and discourses having on sex workers rights and/or on anti-trafficking campaigns?
  • Where is the funding for sex workers rights? Who gives, how much and for what? How does it compare to funding for addressing trafficking in the sex sector?
  • What is the political appeal of the ‘Swedish model’? Why is it that more and more academics, human rights and health organisations are advocating for decriminalisation and more and more governments are adopting the ‘Swedish model’?
Deadline for submissions: 8 July 2018.
Word count for full article submissions: 4,000 – 6,000 words, including footnotes, author bio and abstract.
In addition to full-length conceptual, research-based, or case study focused thematic papers, we invite the submission of shorter, blog-style pieces of 1000-1200 words, which are relevant to the issue theme. We particularly welcome contributions from sex workers or organisations working with them, as well as from authors from or based in the global South. We also invite book reviews or book review essays (comparing 2-3 books).
Special Issue to be published in April 2019.
The Review promotes a human rights based approach to anti-trafficking, exploring anti-trafficking in a broader context, including gender analyses and intersections with labour and migrant rights. Academics, practitioners, trafficked persons and advocates are invited to submit articles. Contributions from those living and working in developing countries are particularly welcome. The journal is a freely available, open access publication with a readership in over 100 countries. The Anti-Trafficking Review is abstracted/indexed/tracked in: ProQuest, Ebsco Host, Ulrich’s, Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association, Directory of Open Access Journals, WorldCat, Google Scholar, CrossRef, CNKI and ScienceOpen.
We advise those interested in submitting to follow the Review‘s style guide and submission procedures, available at Manuscripts should be submitted in line with the issue’s theme. Email the editorial team at atr@gaatw.orgwith any queries.
Thematic Issue Guest Editor: Annalee Lepp
Editor: Borislav Gerasimov