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to zero: Zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination, zero AIDS-related
Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ)
December 01, 2013
World AIDS Day
is celebrated on 1 December every year to raise awareness about
HIV/AIDS and to demonstrate Global solidarity in the face of the
pandemic. GALZ’s focus on HIV programming is improving access
to prevention, treatment and care services for the Lesbian, Gay,
Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Community in Zimbabwe.
government has done so much in HIV prevention, Treatment and PMTCT
compared to other countries. GALZ applauds the government of Zimbabwe
for making tremendous strides in reducing HIV infections With an
adult prevalence rate of 13.7% Zimbabwe is one of the five countries
hardest hit by HIV and AIDS globally. We commend Government efforts
to train nurses to prescribe and manage anti retroviral (ARV) drug
treatment. We hope that such initiatives would contribute to increasing
access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services for
marginalised groups as well.
We are concerned
that key populations such as men who have sex with men and women,
women who have sex with women and men, sex workers continue to be
marginalised in HIV programming. The health system should address
negative structural factors that prevent the disclosure of sexual
orientation as well as maintaining confidentiality that encourages
the LGBTI community to seek health services, disclose and address
risky behaviour with healthcare workers.
In an effort
to attain the three zeros target, HIV surveillance systems in Zimbabwe
should not ignore MSM and WSW and the use of evidence specific to
the LGBTI community should be considered in designing appropriate
HIV prevention programs and services. There is need to create an
enabling environment where the exclusion of gay men, MSM and WSW
from the HIV prevention, treatment and care services ends.
We believe that
Innovative programmes should be put in place to reach the LGBTI
community with proper information on preventive and protective methods
and support services. We recommend the development of peer-to-peer
approaches in an effort to yield better results since not many people
are comfortable talking about sex and sexuality issues in public
We call on the
Government to consider targeted HIV prevention programmes to be
implemented with the engagement and participation of the LGBTI community.
We believe that such programmes are necessary to ensure that proper
information on preventive, protective methods and the LGBTI community
could access support services.
Visit the GALZ
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