World AIDS Day is for reflection, remembrance and action - Human Rights Activist

World AIDS Day is for reflection, remembrance and action - Human Rights Activist

By Mansi Chand
Friday 01/12/2023

World AIDS Day is a day for reflection, remembrance and action because people losing lives due to HIV is an issue that affects everyone.

Those were the words of human rights activist, Isikeli Vulavou while delivering his message on the commemoration of World AIDS Day at FNU Nasinu.

Vulavou says different communities, schools and religious groups can help in implementing the message and awareness that everyone needs to be aware of while we sometimes need to take the first step and not wait for others as this is a sensitive issue.

He says the LGBTQI community is also affected by this however sometimes there is no inclusivity and the community demands to be recognised which can be dismantled through the Ministry, teachers and students at an early stage.

He says another issue is that in society, youths are not allowed to speak about sex with parents.

Vulavou says through the National HIV Strategic Plan and repeated outreach programs, more people were guided which is an achievement.

He further says families of HIV survivors or those who have lost their lives have experienced devastating effects, stigma and discrimination.

He adds they require more funding to continue the work they do.

The former President and HIV Goodwill Ambassador, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau says this is a crisis and more scary that people between the ages of 20 to 29 years have the highest number of cases.

258 HIV cases have been recorded this year until the end of September while 245 cases were recorded last year.

29 people lost their lives due to HIV this year.

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