Helpful links, articles, and reference material relating to sex worker rights and decriminalization



Community Resources

Sex Worker and LGBTQIA Resource Guide: COVID-19
(New York Transgender Advocacy Group, GLITS, and Decriminalize Sex Work, March 2020)


Academic Journals and Reports

Craigslist Reduced Violence Against Women
(Cunningham et. al, 2019)

A Review of the Criminalisation of Paying for Sexual Services in Northern Ireland
(Queens University Belfast School of Law/Ellison, Ní Dhónaill and Early 2019, on behalf of the UK DOJ)

The Impact of the Prostitution Reform Act on the Health and Safety Practices of Sex Workers
(Abel et. al., 2007)

Community-Based Responses to Negative Health Impacts of Sexual Humanitarian Anti-Trafficking Policies and the Criminalization of Sex Work and Migration in the US 
(Hoefinger et. al, 2020)

Decriminalizing Indoor Prostitution: Implications for Sexual Violence and Public Health (Cunningham and Shah, 2018)

Research Brief: After SESTA/FOSTA
(The Samaritan Women)

Twenty Years of Failing Sex Workers: A community report on the impact of the 1999 Swedish Sex Purchase Act
(Fuckförbundet, 2019)

A Decade of Decriminalization: Sex work ‘down under’ but not underground
(Abel, 2014)

Moving Beyond Supply and Demand ‘Catchphrases: Assessing the uses and limitations of demand-based approaches in anti-trafficking
(Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women, 2011)

Diversion From Justice: A Rights-Based Analysis of Local “Prostitution Diversion Programs” and Their Impacts on People in the Sex Sector in the United States
(Yale Law School, 2018)

Decreasing Human Trafficking Through Sex Work Decriminalization
(Albright and D’Adamo, 2017)

Stigma in the Sex Trades
(Wolf, 2018)

The Nature and Prevalence of Prostitution and Sex Work in England and Wales Today
(University of Bristol, 2019)

New Directions in Research on Human Trafficking
(AAPSS/Weitzer 2014)

The Swedish Law To Criminalize Clients: A failed experiment
(American University, Washington College of Law/Jordan, 2017)

Un-Meetable Promises: Rhetoric and Reality in New York City’s Human Trafficking Intervention Courts
(Yale Law School, 2018)

The Human Cost of ‘Crushing’ the Market: Criminalization of Sex Work in Norway
(Amnesty International, 2016)

Beyond the Gaze: Briefing on Customers Who Buy Sex Online
(University of Leicester/Sanders et. al, 2017)

The Intersection of Sex Work and HIV Criminalization
(The Center for HIV Law and Policy,  2017)

Ten Reasons to Decriminalize Sex Work
(Open Society Foundations/Public Health Program, 2015)

Decriminalization of Sex Work To Fight HIV Infections Worldwide
(The Lancet, 2014)


DSW’s Book List

Sex Workers Unite: A History of the Movement from Stonewall to SlutWalk, by Melinda Chateauvert

Revolting Prostitutes: The Fight for Sex Workers’ Rights, by Molly Smith and Juno Mac

Naked Truth: Strip Clubs, Democracy, and a Christian Right, by Judith Lynn Hanna

Getting Screwed: Sex Workers and the Law, by Alison Bass

State of Sex, by Barbara Brents

Emergent Strategy: Shaping Change, Changing Worlds, by Adrienne Maree Brown

The Managed Heart: Commercialization of Human Feeling, by Arlie Russell Hochschild


Organizations and Allies


It's Time To Decriminalize Sex Work

Amnesty International

Sex Worker Rights are Human Rights (2015)

Amnesty International pushes policy and research on protection of sex workers rights (2016)

Q and A on policy to support the human rights of sex workers

Equality Now

FOSTA: Explained in Graphics

Global Network of Sex Worker Projects

Resource Page

Don’t Hate or Conflate!: Trafficking Brief from NSWP

A Community Guide: Sex-Workers Experiments of Stock-Outs of Commodities and Treatments

Sex Work and the Law: Understanding Legal Frameworks and the Struggle for Sex Work Law Reforms

Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive (HIPS) DC

Harm Reduction

Human Rights Watch

Why Sex Work Should Be Decriminalized (2019)

US: Block Law Endangering Sex Workers (FOSTA) (2019)

Stop Criminalizing Sex Work in DC: Dozens of groups urge passage of decriminalization Bill

New York Transgender Advocacy Group (NYTAG)

Policy Briefs

Dismantling Stigma in the Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Community

Red Canary Song

How Red Canary Song Is Advocating for Migrant Sex Workers


Sex Worker Outreach Project - United States 

Fact Sheets

Know Your Rights Manual for the Sex Worker Community: Criminal Law (National Lawyers

SWOP Behind Bars

Sex Workers Project (Urban Justice Center)

The Use of Raids to Fight Trafficking in Persons (2009)

Woodhull Freedom Foundation

Woodhull’s Lawsuit Against FOSTA


Oral Arguments (9.18.2019)



Summary of Sex Work Laws in the United States

New Zealand Decriminalization Bill

Community Safety and Health Act of 2019 (DC)