2004 International Aids Conference held in Bangkok, Thailand

The fifteenth International Aids Conference was held in Bangkok in July 2004. Around 20,000 delegates attended the conference. The Thai Prime Minister and the Secretary-General of the United Nations both gave speeches at the opening ceremony.

APNSW hosted a “go-go bar” at the event, where performances and demonstrations about HIV prevention took place. APNSW also hosted a session where members taught conference delegates “Information Education Communication” (IEC) production skills. This session was based on APNSW’s experience developing the cross-cultural “Making Sex Work Safe” training materials.

Paulo Longo, co-ordinator of the International Network of Sex Work Projects and co-author of the English and Spanish versions of “Making Sex Work Safe” said: “APNSW has developed a lot through this cultural approach to Making Sex Work Safe. It is the more impressive because of the many languages here. I hope what people see at this conference convinces them to invest in sex workers to use some of this technique in other regions too.

As a result of their activities around the conference, Empower Foundation reported a significant and positive shift in Thai public opinion towards sex workers.