Health

Taboos associated with HIV/AIDS must be confronted

December 2, 2022 5:10 am

Pacific Sexual and Gender Diversity Network Chief Executive, Isikeli Vulavou [Source: PSGDN/Twitter]

There is a need to ensure that those living with HIV/AIDS have the same rights to information, freedom of speech, treatment, and quality healthcare as those without the infection.

Pacific Sexual and Gender Diversity Network Chief Executive, Isikeli Vulavou made the comments yesterday to mark World AIDS Day.

Vulavou says every opportunity must be used to educate and advocate about the importance of decreasing the spread of HIV/AIDS and protecting those living with it from discrimination and mistreatment.

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He says discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity and homophobia fuel the HIV epidemic in marginalized people.

This is particularly against transgender women, gay and bisexual men, and sex workers in the region and deprives them of their right to the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health.

Vulavou says while it is often a challenge to work together, everyone, including teachers, human rights activists, health care workers, politicians, and religious leaders must work together to confront the taboos associated with HIV/AIDS.