The New Zealand Police and the Prostitutes' Collective have teamed together in a world-first partnership to create a guide for sex workers who have experienced sexual assault.

The 41-page pamphlet was launched today in Wellington, on the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers.

The pamphlet includes information on care, support networks and how to report sexual assault to Police.

A guide for sex workers who have experienced sexual assault. NZ Herald / Emme McKay
A guide for sex workers who have experienced sexual assault. NZ Herald / Emme McKay

Detective Senior Sergeant Haley Ryan said the idea came about after an incident in the Hutt Valley involving a sex worker being attacked in her home.

Advertisement

Wellington District Commander Sam Hoyle said assault can be a real risk for people working in the sex industry.

"Everybody has the right to be safe and feel safe at work, whatever you do... it's a basic tenet of human rights."

He said they had a role to play, as police, to allow people who work in the sex industry to feel supported coming forward.

He said it could be seen as a "big scary system" from the outside.

Dame Catherine Healy, the Prostitutes' Collective National Co-ordinator, said sex workers often angst about whether to step up and come out about sexual violence and assault.

"It's always a moment where you have to assess a lot of risks that other people don't have to necessarily.

"It's to do with stigma, will I be judged as a sex worker? How will I be received? Will I be told off for putting myself at risk... all of those stand as a barrier for coming forward."

Healy said it meant a lot for sex workers and also sent a message internationally that New Zealand plays a significant role for the human rights of sex workers.

Advertisement

She said it was an "unique" co-branding of the two organisations and it would be a world-first.

The pamphlet will be available across the country and online for anyone in the sex industry.