National Solidarity against Sexual Exploitation of Women (hereinafter referred to as National Solidarity) is a group of women’s human rights organizations working against prostitution.
National Solidarity was founded June 9th, 2004 with 13 organizations in membership across the country.
The member organizations include counseling centers, shelters, and self-reliance support centers as well as a network of prostitution survivors called Moongchi.
National Solidarity organizes policy workshops, forums, and panel discussions to inform the public about issues related to prostitution, while running a regular educational program for its activists to enhance their capabilities.
National Solidarity first began as a task force which was formed to deal with the tragic deaths of prostituted women caused by fires in the city of Gunsan in 2000 and 2002. Since then, it has played a leading role in the legislation of the anti-prostitution laws of 2004. It also stepped up to resolve the deaths of prostituted women in fires at red-light districts in Seoul and Gwangju.
National Solidarity has held an annual anti-prostitution campaign called the ‘Dandelion Pilgrimage’ since 2006, through which Participants visit historic sites of fires in Gunsan and commemorate the deaths of prostituted women.
It organizes forums to influence prostitution-related policies on both local and national levels. National Solidarity has succeeded in introducing local policies in six regions through which the women who wish to exit prostitution can receive additional services on top of the general support available on the national level. These include the establishment and enactment of measures to provide the women protection and assist them to achieve self-reliance, research on realities in prostitution, funding for living expenses and vocational training, counseling and assistance for legal, medical, vocational education, as well as housing support. Two more regions are currently considering implementing the policy as well.
National Solidarity is against prostitution and regards it as a form of violence against women as well as sexual exploitation of women.
National Solidarity opposes the advocates for those who benefit from the sex industry and activities which promote and/or condone the demand for prostitution.
National Solidarity objects to violence against all types of social minority including women and strives to vocalize for human rights and decriminalization of prostituted women.
4. What National Solidarity and Its Member Organizations Do
Emergency rescue in accordance with the police when requested by victims of sextrafficking
Psychological therapy for women exiting prostitution
Self-reliance support (vocational training, education, etc.)
Lobby for revising the anti-prostitution punishment law to intensify penalties for sex buyers, pimps, and brothel owners
Public awareness campaigns
National Solidarity has counseling centers, shelters, and self-reliance support centers for women in prostitution. It keeps cooperative relationships with various fields of civil movement while playing a key role in feminist and anti-prostitution movements.
National solidarity helps activists improve their capabilities by organizing policy forums, educational programs, and rallies.
National Solidarity carries out campaigns, policy advocacy, protests to dismantle the exploitative structure of the sex trade, policy advocacy, protests, while building alliances for comprehensive support networks for the victims and for global struggle against prostitution.
1To spread a movement aiming to curb the demand side of prostitution and dismantle the exploitative structure of the sex trade
(1) To reveal the reality of prostitution and seek solutions to dismantle the social structure enabling the exploitation
(2) To call on law enforcement to intensify punishment on pimps and brothel owners
(3) To conduct public campaigns to raise awareness on the importance of focusing on curbing demand and disrupting the exploitative and sexist structure surrounding prostitution
2To decriminalize women in prostitution and assist survivors in being heard
(1) To assist prostitution survivors’ effort to organize networks and activities
(2) To analyze further victimization of prostituted women caused by criminal cases prosecuted against them
(3) To raise public awareness on the necessity for decriminalization of all prostituted women
3To actively respond to violations of women’s human rights
(1) To advocate women’s human rights by discussing issues such as international sex trade and military prostitution as well as teenage girls, North Korean refugee women and migrant women driven into the sex industry
(2) To build an alliance with a feminist perspective to stand against violence and discrimination against women
4To elaborate policies based on the abolitionist point of view
(1) To monitor government policies and to provide recommendations on prostitution
(2) To raise awareness within local communities and build alliances against the sex trade on the national level
(3) To provide both short-term and long-term strategies to successfully curb demand, intensify penalties for pimps/brothel owners, and decriminalize prostituted women.
5To reinforce alliances among human rights advocacy groups against prostitution and propose direction for activism
(1) To provide training courses based on a feminist perspective to enhance activists’ capabilities
(2) To expand alliances on both national and local level through which feminist and abolitionist ideas can be taught, shared, and promoted
(3) To reinforce alliances among women’s human rights groups by organizing activities against prostitution
(4) To politicize issues of gender equality and human rights, while providing ideas for alternative policies which aim to abolish prostitution