Credits: © Sven Torfinn/OSF
Country: Malawi


Ella is a sex worker. She has been arrested several times by police, spent time in jail, and has been raped by police officers. While sex work in Malawi is not an offence; sex workers are often arrested either for being a “rogue and a vagabond” or for being “idle and disorderly”. When arrested, sex workers, like Ella, are exposed to abuse. Some are gang raped by the police, beaten up or have their money taken. Societal stigma leaves sex workers vulnerable and they are afraid to report the abuse or seek any form of redress. They often pay bribes or are forced to plead guilty to charges laid against them even when they are false.

Petty Offences
Pre-trial Detention
Use of Public Spaces
People Groups:
People experiencing Poverty
Sex Workers
Women and Girls