Thursday, November 11, 2010

Criminalization Hampers HIV Prevention in the Caribbean

From UNAIDS Today

Two-thirds of countries in the Caribbean continue to criminalize homosexuality. Where homophobia is institutionalized in the law, stigma and discrimination against men who have sex with men is pronounced. Homophobia blocks access to HIV prevention programmes and impacts the quality of care for people living with HIV.

“Imagine yourself as a gay man in such an environment. How confident would you feel about getting an HIV test, or asking for information on prevention or treatment?” asked Mr Sidibé. “Homophobia hurts wherever it haunts—from classrooms to courtrooms,” he added.

At the 10th annual general meeting of the Pan-Caribbean Partnership Against HIV and AIDS (PANCAP), held in St Maarten, Netherlands Antilles, UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé joined former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and Caribbean leaders to take stock of progress, challenges and lessons learned in the regional response to the HIV epidemic over the past decade.

Read the rest

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