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29/07/2012 - Nicaragua

The General Director of the Nicaraguan National Police apologized

Due to abuse that female sex workers have received from some police of Nicaragua, the maximum Head of the force apologized and said she felt embarrassed by the actions of their colleagues.

 Jefa máxima policial, Aminta Granera

"I want to apologize on behalf of the National Police for the disrespect and humiliation that many of you have been subjected by some of our officers", recognized in a statement Police Chief Aminta Granera.

"As a woman and as director of the National Police, I feel ashamed of the attitude of some of these colleagues", said Granera, who promised to change the situation. "I can assure you that your words, your sufferings, your experiences will not be in a vacuum, your security demands will find an answer", Granera promised in a meeting with female sex workers. In fact, the first commissioned instructed the Police Stations for Women to monitor and respond to each of the petitions expressed by female sex workers.

Maria Elena Dávila, president of the organization of female sex workers Girasoles, RedTraSex member, said that the last five years they have been making efforts to be seen as “women with rights” and not as an object that even the authorities can run over indiscriminately. Without going any further in March, the referent and member of RedTraSex told to Acan-Efe that in 12 months at least seven sex workers were murdered and she demanded society to respect the rights of women engaged in sex work.

In 2009, Girasoles signed an agreement with the Ombudsman for the Defense of Human Rights to access to legal support and this helped to decreasing the cases of attacks. "That agreement helped us to improve our situation, but there are still instances of police violence towards female sex workers. There are physically and verbally abused women, fellows who wanted to denounce and could not, female sex workers blackmailed by the police, illegal detention with false pretenses, unpunished crimes of fellows murdered”, said Maria Elena.

The president of Girasoles recognized as positive statements of the Nicaraguan Police Chief, but said that as a public servant and authority "is part of her responsibility to protect our rights as Nicaraguan citizen. We are not been giving anything away."

Meanwhile, another referent of RedTraSex and president of Las Golondrinas, Fanny Torres, expressed her satisfaction that the National Police Directorate is committed to respecting the rights of female sex workers, but she said it will be an achievement only if they keep their word to pay attention to our complaints.

Having another ally that supports the work of female sex workers in Nicaragua in their search of the respect they deserve is an advance in the treatment historically received by the National Police. As stated from Girasoles: "The situation has changed for us and this step consolidates the work we have been doing for years".

Through dialogue and our fellows’ advocacy, the unthinkable was achieved: respect from the police and to establish a direct channel for complaints that, we hope, to be less and less.