Hard Life for a Legal Work: The 2008 Anti-Trafficking Law and Sex Work
This paper is written as part of my consultancy with the Cambodian Alliance for Combating HIV/AIDS (CACHA). The consultancy is an integral part of a larger research project by CACHA that aims to advocate for positive change in the approaches, practices, policies, and mechanisms employed by authorities, development partners, service providers and civil society vis:à:vis Universal Access (to treatment for HIV) and the right to work through strategic partnership with entertainment/sex workers. The primary purpose of the paper is to identify the challenges of the 2008 ‘Law on Suppression of Human Trafficking and Sexual Exploitation’ on the ‘right to work’ of ‘entertainment/sex workers’. The paper addresses four key issues outlined in the consultancy Term of Reference (TOR): (1) Comparison of Khmer version of law with English translation:especially looking at sections which appear to make sex work illegal; (2) Assessment of the workability of the new law and guidelines based on experiences in other jurisdictions: including South Korea which passed a similar law four years ago; (3) Overview of abuses under new law and anti:trafficking campaigns from collected reports, interviews, and case studies; and (4) Making recommendations for the amendment of the law taking into account the Cambodian legal system.
*Thanks Mr. Chenda Keo, a Ph.D student at the Australian National University, for the contribution of this paper.
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