In South Africa, prostitution has been illegal since the 1957 Sexual Offences Act. Sex workers are marginalised and many face police brutality.
In a Cape Town based study shows that the highest levels of violence against sex workers come from the police, Nicole Fick (2006) reports that, upon arrest, prostitutes are often forced to “do sexual favours” by policemen, in return for a release. The sexual assault and ill treatment they suffer from the police is indicative of the dominant position that prostitutes are immoral and illegible for human rights.
The anti-public is the Sex Workers’ Education and Advocacy Taskforce (SWEAT). Their radical position is that “sex workers human rights are respected, protected, promoted and fulfilled by members of society and the state to reduce high levels of violence, intimidation and harassment against sex workers at the hands of the police, their clients, their managers and intimate partners (SWEAT, 2015).”