While HIV was initially thought of as a “gay disease” — an ignorant misconception that opened the door for lethal homophobia — it’s true that gay, bisexual and trans men are still a major a risk group for the virus. Which makes it all the more strange that the Philippines just launched an “AIDS hour” commemoration that excludes men who have sex with men. That and more in our round-up of HIV news from around the world.
As the UN prepares for the upcoming High-level Meeting on HIV/AIDS, some states raised objections to the participation of NGOs with links to LGBT people. In response UNAIDS released a strongly worded appeal calling ‘for inclusion and full participation of civil society organizations.’
As the Philippines launched its first ‘AIDS hour’ to commemorate those lost to HIV/AIDS, Human Rights Watch warned that the country’s efforts cannot be successful as long as it continues to exclude men who have sex with men and people who inject drugs.
From New Zealand the AIDS Epidemiology Group warned that diagnosis of HIV remains high in the country. And the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control saw a significant increase in syphilis rates across Europe, especially among men who have sex with men.
Out of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe came a unique report assessing HIV prevention and care initiatives aimed at gay men and other men who have sex with men. AIDS Alliance launched an online resource of these initiatives to further help these men living in hostile environments.
During a recent webinar, activists and researchers from across the world discussed the widespread usage of PrEP for HIV prevention despite the lack of formally available channels of the medication. Meanwhile the National Health Service (NHS) of England reconfirmed it will not provide PrEP despite protests from leading HIV organizations.
Unicorn Booty brings attentions to global issues of significance for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people. Our partnership with Equal Eyes, a news source produced in collaboration with UNAIDS, the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS, is part of that effort. To learn more, visit their site at Equal-Eyes.org.
This coverage promotes sexual and gender equality while highlighting issues of health, violence, culture, and legal and human rights. Equal Eyes provides advocates and allies a common frame of reference for the realities of global LGBTI communities. Through followup reporting and disseminating this coverage, our effort is to ensure we have a representation of the global stories that matter most or may have under-reporting.
(Featured image via Andrew Stevens/Flickr)
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