Policy Development & Advocacy

PDA Sex Workers March

Decriminalisation of Sex Work

PDA Migration

Migration, Gender and Health

PDA Prison Reform

Prisons Transformation – Policy Reform, Advocacy and Accountability

PDA Public Transport

Public Transport and Gender-Based Violence

PDA March

Stop Gender Violence: A National Campaign


The UCLA Law – Sonke Health & Human Rights Fellowship

South Africa has one of the world’s most progressive constitutions, which includes a justiciable Bill of Rights. However, our country is also home to some of the world’s highest rates of violence. Sexual violence, including domestic abuse, rape, assault and murder, are far too common. Similarly, there are a vast number of human rights violations daily against marginalised groups such as prisoners, sex workers and migrants, LGBTIQ people, women and children. What is particularly horrifying is that some of these cases are perpetrated by police law enforcement or community leaders.

Violence in South Africa is systemic and normalised – and has to be challenged!

What we do

Sonke’s Policy Development and Advocacy (PDA) Unit consists of policy analysts, researchers and lawyers who base their practice in activism and disrupting the status quo. They – and Sonke – advocate for progressive legislation and policy on gender equality, gender-based violence, sexual and reproductive health and rights (including HIV and AIDS) to empower and protect women, children and vulnerable men, and to cultivate positive masculinities. They offer technical expertise to national processes of drafting legislation and policies; use the courts and Chapter 9 institutions to hold public figures accountable for their actions; support communities to participate in public advocacy action; and lobby Government institutions to uphold the rights of all, but in particular marginalised groups.