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  • Expresidente of Paraguay, Fernando Lugo, and current Senator for the Frente Guasu.

    Expresidente of Paraguay, Fernando Lugo, and current Senator for the Frente Guasu. | Photo: EFE/Archive

At least 55 sex workers have reportedly been assassinated since Paraguay became a formal democracy in 1989.

Sex workers need better protection against the “institutional violence” as well as better health care, said United for Hope, of UNES, after meeting former president and current head of the Senate Fernando Lugo on Wednesday.

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UNES President Lucy Esquivel met Lugo in a bid to include sex workers' demands in a draft bill currently debated in Congress, and demanded by sex workers since June 2016.

Among the proposals submitted to the Senate, a committee monitoring the budget allocated to health will be created in order to “invest much more in prevention,” she said in a press conference.

Esquivel told reporters that sex workers required more investment from the state to feel safe. As for now, they are only provided with information, educational material, and preservatives, she added.

She also denounced institutional violence in the justice system and harassment from the part of police officers in the streets and other public spaces, demanding a better training of public agents on sex work.

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