This policy vision paper outlines the key priorities for women with HIV as identified by a group of young HIV positive women from across Eastern and Southern Africa who met in Durban in April 2004. The meeting was a dialogue organized by the International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS (ICW) in partnership with Youth Against AIDS Network (YAAN) and Gender AIDS Forum (GAF). Three primary priorities are identified: 1) Access to sexual and reproductive rights, 2) Access to screening, treatment, and prevention, and 3) meaningful participation and action of women with HIV in decision-making at the community, national, and regional levels. Within these three priorities, several specific issues and examples are identified, citing experiences of real women with HIV. The vision paper then provides a call to action, identifying specific steps that must be taken to remedy these shortcomings. The paper provides a useful starting-point for HIV-positive women and advocates seeking to identify, address, and mobilize around HIV issues specific to women, or anyone seeking to understand the unique obstacles facing HIV-positive women. While many of the issues are identified by women around the world, the themes of disenfranchisement, marginalization, and stigma are universal. Produced by the International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS.
The Center for HIV Law and Policy challenges barriers to the rights and health of people affected by HIV through legal advocacy, high-impact policy initiatives, and creation of cross-issue partnerships, networks and resources. We support movement building that amplifies the power of individuals and communities to mobilize for change that is rooted in racial, gender and economic justice.