In Amsterdam took place a press conference dedicated to the launch of the campaign "Chase the virus, not people!"
At the XXII International AIDS Conference (AIDS2018), which was not yet launched in Amsterdam, a press conference was held on the launch of the campaign of networks of communities of Eastern Europe and Central Asia (EECA) "Chase the Virus, not People!".
Representatives of the largest HIV-service organizations of the region: EECA ACP, ECU of PLHIV, EASV, EJCS, EKOM, ESLUN, Teenergizer, SWAN) called for immediate joint action in response to the HIV epidemic. According to them, it is necessary to draw the world's attention to the problems of stigma and discrimination of key groups as the main barrier for an effective response to the spread of HIV in the region.
According to experts, the key task of the campaign, which has already been supported by more than 100 organizations around the world, is the joint efforts to realistically fulfill the authorities' obligations to create a favorable legal environment and involve civil society representatives in decision-making processes.
"We understand that now, more than ever, the voice of our region and representatives of the communities should sound very loud, our countries need comprehensive support in the fight against the epidemic and political will to reform the politicians. That is why the 9 regional EECCA networks declare: "Pursue the virus, not people!" Now it is necessary to overcome discrimination of key populations such as PLHIV, women living with HIV, people who use drugs, MSM, trans people, sex workers, youth and adolescents, children and people who are aging with HIV, "said Wojciech Jerzy Tomczyński, co-chairman of the Eastern European and Central Asian Association of People Living with HIV (ECUO of PLWH).
"I am convinced that only if zero discrimination and destigmatization is achieved, will the political will of our governments. the active actions of communities and international partners, only when we achieve better access to services, treatment and quality of life for people living with HIV and key populations, all and everyone, "Mr. Tomczyński said.
According to the representatives of the associations, within the framework of the campaign throughout the days of AIDS 2018 there will be a series of events aimed at both civil society and political leaders of the region, UN agencies and international organizations, donors and experts.