Silenced and forgotten paper launched in Zambia
OSISA agenda setting paper on HIV and minorities
The Zambia National Aids, TB and STI control council (NAC) has endorsed and launched OSISA’s HIV and AIDS agenda setting paper - Silenced and Forgotten - for women living with HIV, sex workers and LGBTI people in southern Africa and the Indian Ocean states.
The event was officiated at by the NAC Director Director of Programmes, Dr Harold Witola. The UNDP Country Director for Zambia, Viola Morgan, also attended the launch of the paper, which was commissioned and supported by UN Women.
The official launch represents a step in the right direction for a country that has seen an increased rate of victimisation of sex workers and LGBTI people in recent months.
The paper points out barriers that hinder access to services for women living with HIV, sex workers and LGBTI people and highlights challenges to attaining a holistic and human rights based approach to HIV and AIDS programming in the region.
Silenced and Forgotten also makes a strong call for a review and repeal of all laws that implicitly or explicitly criminalise HIV transmission, sex work and adult consensual same sex relations. It also urges governments, where applicable, to enforce protective laws that already exist to end the marginalisation and exclusion of women living with HIV, sex workers and LGBT people.