|Comparative Analysis: Research Studies from India and Uganda - HIV and AIDS-related Discrimination, Stigmatization and Denial (UNAIDS, 2000, 43 p.)|
From the moment scientists identified HIV/AIDS, social responses of fear, denial, stigma and discrimination have accompanied the epidemic. Discrimination has spread rapidly, fuelling anxiety and prejudice against groups most affected as well as those living with HIV/AIDS.
Despite numerous conferences and expert consultations, and despite the passing of Resolution 49/1999 of the UN Commission on Human Rights prohibiting discrimination on the basis of HIV status, relatively little is known about the causes of these negative responses or how they can best be combated. For this reason, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS provided financial and technical support to the studies described here. Conducted by local investigators in India and Uganda, this research offers insight into the experiences of people living with HIV/AIDS, negative social responses encountered, and the roots of HIV/AIDS-related discrimination, stigma and denial.
While the work described in this report does not claim to offer the last word on these matters, it does highlight a series of practical steps that can be taken in policy, programming and research. These studies are part of a concerted effort to rid the world of the stigma and discrimination that hampers efforts to reduce levels of infection and impact, in addition to providing support for people living with HIV/AIDS.
Peter Piot, MD, PhD