Centre For Women's Justice

Stop Penalising Survivors of Sexual Exploitation

This project will challenge the long term impact of sexual exploitation which results from women being criminalised in the context of the abuse they were subjected to. Centre for Women’s Justice is a feminist legal charity, widely recognised as a centre of excellence in its field.

history Campaign has now closed

It ran from 12:00 PM, 1 December 2020 to 12:00 PM, 8 December 2020

open_in_new https://www.centreforwomensjustice.org.uk

Registered Charity in England and Wales (1169213)

Check mark Match funded

Campaign target


Amount raised




Championed by Human Rights Fund


  • Human Rights/AdvocacyHuman Rights/Advocacy


  • Women & GirlsWomen & Girls


United Kingdom

  • "Centre for Women's Justice is an incredible charity. I personally can’t thank them enough for everything they have done & continue to do to challenge the justice system around male violence against women & girls. You’re my heroes"

    — Vicky Smith, Client

  • "I am honestly so grateful to be able to turn to the centre for advice and guidance, I can sometimes feel out of my depth and it really is empowering to have your backing!"

    — Frontline advocate, Rape Crisis

  • “We as an organisation have found the support given to us by CWJ invaluable in supporting our very vulnerable clients to ensure their rights as victims of serious crimes are being upheld in the criminal justice system, at a time when conviction levels are at an all time low.”

    — Frontline advocate


Sexually exploited women and girls often have criminal records for offences they committed in the context of prostitution (including soliciting and public order offences). These can date back decades. Even when the convictions are spent, they are retained by the police for 100 years causing women further distress and humiliation. Such disclosure can be a barrier to accessing education, employment and volunteering opportunities; the very things those women need to move on with their lives.


We successfully challenged disclosure rules for three women (link) forced into prostitution as teenagers. But those records are still held for 100 years - a position we are challenging. We have been contacted by 20 women in a similar situation. We will use donations to take accounts and investigate how to more widely challenge the criminalisation of victims of sexual exploitation. This will also create a unique evidence base to lobby the Government and assist others.