|Lambda Legal Releases Report on HIV Stigma and Discrimination in Advance of World AIDS Day|
In advance of World AIDS Day (December 1), Lambda Legal releases an evidence-based report on the continuing stigma and discrimination faced by people living with HIV to policy makers and advocates.
"It's been thirty years since the CDC reported the first cases of HIV, and yet we have not come nearly far enough in educating the public about HIV and in reducing stigma and discrimination. Fear and ignorance about HIV and discrimination against people living with HIV remains a serious problem that both marginalizes people and poses barriers to treatment and care," said Scott Schoettes, HIV Project Staff Attorney at Lambda Legal. "We urge advocates, educators and policy makers to look to this report about the lives of those with HIV and use it to inform their decisions. All levels of government, organizations and individuals who serve and advocate for people living with HIV must work to increase the public's knowledge about the ways HIV is - and is not - transmitted; eradicate policies and practices that discriminate against people based on their HIV status; and enforce antidiscrimination laws to protect the civil rights of people living with HIV."
The National HIV/AIDS Strategy - issued by the Obama Administration this past summer - points out that stigma and discrimination continue to fuel the HIV/AIDS epidemic in this country. The United States' first-ever national strategy in the fight against HIV/AIDS makes specific recommendations for actions that should be taken to reduce or eliminate the types of harms described in Lambda Legal's report. In the coming year, Lambda Legal will continue to press the federal government, as well as legislators and policymakers at all levels, to address these critical issues as they implement the national strategy.