There are 4.9 million people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIV) in Asia and the Pacific today. For this group, HIV-related stigma is pervasive, as is HIV-related discrimination in private and public settings. Discrimination and stigma have a wide array of negative consequences, but discrimination in healthcare settings is particularly egregious, as such practices prevent access to basic, sometimes life-saving, care for millions of people.
Recognizing this as a crucial issue in the region, Asia Catalyst launches its Regional Rights Training Program this weekend, with a core focus on ending discrimination against PLHIV in healthcare settings.
This weekend, March 14-16, the Regional Rights Training Program will bring together 16 civil society leaders, advocates, and members of PLHIV community based organizations (CBOs) from Cambodia, China, Myanmar, and Viet Nam, for the first of an intensive workshop series on human rights documentation and advocacy in Bangkok, Thailand.
This weekend’s workshop will focus on helping our new CBO partners identify key health rights issues affecting their communities, and place them within an international human rights law framework. Representatives of regional UN agencies and community networks will also be on hand for expert advice on advocacy strategies, as well as international guidelines and best practices on preventing and remedying discrimination against PLHIV in healthcare settings.
Over the next 18 months, partners in the Regional Rights Training Program will increase local knowledge and expertise on research, documentation, and advocacy in their home countries. With support and sub-grants from Asia Catalyst, all of our new partners will conduct extensive documentation and research on the issue of medical discrimination in their countries, and form domestic and regional coalitions to conduct rigorous human rights-based advocacy.
Asia Catalyst is excited and humbled to see this much-anticipated program take off. We look forward to introducing you to the participants and updating on project activities as they develop.