Criminal laws on sex work introduced by colonial powers have profoundly shaped contemporary societal attitudes towards sex work and women who sell sex in Southern Africa. In a paper published in a special issue of the International Journal of Gender, Sexuality and Law, HEARD researchers analyse the relationship between sex work and the law to show the barriers to ensuring the rights and security of sex workers. The paper is based on a multi-country study amongst young women who sell sex in Madagascar, Mozambique, Zambia and Zimbabwe (Linking Policy to Programming Project).

The special issue focusses on the relationship between sex work and the law, inspired by Jane Scoular’s (2010) question: does the law matter in sex work?  The full paper is accessible here other contributions to the Special Issue on Sex Work and the Law can be accessed here