On September 13, 2016 in Astana, the Central Asian Association of People Living with HIV (CAA PLHIV) within the USAID Project “Leader of People Living with HIV” with the technical support of the Joint United Nations Program on HIV / AIDS (UNAIDS) held a roundtable discussion on the problem of stigma and discrimination of people living with HIV (PLHIV) in Kazakhstan. The participants discussed a draft plan to eradicate stigma and discrimination against PLHIV and set priorities for the protection of their rights.
On the round table was discussed current trends and challenges in combating the stigma of PLHIV. The results of the research “Index of Stigma”, conducted for the first time in Central Asia by the community, were presented, which were crucial in assessing the current situation. The results of the research demonstrate that the level of stigma and stigmatization among PLWH in the Republic of Kazakhstan remains at a high level, and the greatest stigma and discrimination are experienced by former and current injecting drug users and people with non-traditional gender identities. The results of the study revealed another serious problem – the discriminatory treatment of PLHIV by health professionals, partners and family members.
– The stigma and discrimination of PLHIV not only violate the fundamental human rights foundations, they are also factors in the spread of HIV infection and the main barriers to access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support, as well as to any medical, social, legal and other services. Eliminating the phenomena of stigma and discrimination is the key task of the strategy “In the Goal of the Goal” Zero, “says Nurali Amanzholov, President of the Central Asian Republic of Uzbekistan.
The event was a platform for cooperation and discussion of joint actions of organizations providing services for people living with HIV. Representatives of the Ministry of Health, the National AIDS Center, the United States Agency for International Development, UNAIDS, PSI, KNCV Tuberculosis Foundation and other international organization.