GayLatino puts the body before the exclusion in the HLM

In the papers, the 193 countries that make up the United Nations (UN) aim to end the HIV epidemic. This would be the ambitious target for the year 2030 bringing together representatives of all these countries at the High Level Meeting on HIV (HLM) to be held until Friday, June 10 in New York.

Targets 90-90-90, which continue to extend over time, stipulate to reduce new infections from 2 million per year to less than 500,000, reduce HIV-related deaths from 1.2 million to less than 500,000 and eliminate discrimination, in time to increase resources for the HIV response from $ 19 billion to $ 26 billion per year.

However, and in a setback that we point out as alarming, it is the position of some of these Member States that seems to suggest something else since at a stroke we, the everyday actors, who have put the body - and the life in many cases, those who in some of our countries of origin are the most excluded, those who had the worst in previous years, we continue to be denied as interlocutors, we cover our political praxis. In a clear idea: we are invisible, relegating ourselves to one sentence in the best case, and in others directly to none.

In the drafting of the Political Declaration of this HLM, the pressure of countries such as Russia, India and Indonesia (countries where the LGBT group is criminalized) has relegated references to gay men and other men to a minimum. who have sex with men, and has directly erased any reference to the trans, drug user and sex worker population.

Members of GayLatino who are attending these previous meetings, trying to change the wording of the document, warn about the role of these countries in the invisibilization of key populations and the silent complicity of some countries in other times considered allies, as well as the complete disinterest of some others.

The intention of GayLatino was to open the document to revisions to change it, improve it. Do it from all key populations, as it was in recent years.

We regret the disagreement of these States about breaking the silence at the UN and that this makes it possible to open the discussion. Stating a consensus of panic about the identity of gays, lesbians, trans, sex workers and drug users, our network regrets the exclusion of our communities in these diplomatic agreements, ignoring the historical relevance we have had as political bodies in the most compelling answers to HIV throughout the world.

From New York, the Argentinean Javier Hourcade Bellocq, regional representative of International HIV / AIDS Alliance and member of GayLatino, says that “the first and only time that will refer to the populations by their first and last name is in a tangled and pernicious text that presents us as populations that have a certain number of times receive the virus with respect to the general population “

Paragraph 42 of the proposed Political Declaration mentions: “Alarmed by the slow progress made in reducing infection among women, girls, migrants and key populations, evidence from the epidemic shows an overall higher HIV risk, especially for people who use drugs, who are 24 times more likely to be at risk to HIV compared to adults in the general population, female sex workers who are 10 times more likely to get HIV, men who have sex with men who are 24 times more likely to acquire HIV, trans women who have 49 chances of living with HIV and persons deprived of their liberty who are 5 times more likely to acquire HIV than the general population. “

“So the United Nations, to accommodate the needs and expectations of the most fundamentalist, fanatical and violent states, is willing only to name the key populations blurred, placing our communities only in the place of risk and transmission,” adds the companion of Argentina.

GayLatino believes that these alarming references to the “most at risk” and other “presumed to be living with or affected by HIV”, with prevalences estimated from 200% to 500% higher than in the general population, make invisible gay men by not being explicitly named outside the framework of risk, as subjects of rights especially in Central and Latin America but also in the rest of the world

What is not named does not apply political importance. Or what is the same: it ignores specific public policies for these communities.

Countries as powerful and influential as the United States are not about giving and reopening the document to improve it. The US representative has expressed that “it will ignore the pressure of some activists to break the silence, we believe that this is going to be harmful to the process we are building and in diplomacy it is not good to come to a meeting and not have a Declaration Policy. “

This dangerous situation demands once more the involvement of our most earthly activist spirit. You must hear our voice.

In the UN General Assembly, there are countries where the LGBT collective achieves legal and rights advances, as well as those where laws and policies criminalize same-sex relationships, or where people living with HIV are relegated to the lowest social and human status, considering them outcasts of society.

We must redouble our claim. There is a correlation between the severance of human rights and exclusion. Our militant voice must resonate loudly. It is difficult but not impossible.

In a few hours, members of GayLatino and other Latin American activist groups will join a mobilization in front of the United Nations in protest of the silence that continues to criminalize and leave behind entire communities and thousands of gays and transgender women around the world.

“We will take our complaints, flags and posters to reflect our concern, annoyance absolute rage on this situation,” said Sergio Lopez, SOMOSGAY activist in Paraguay. “We believe that evidence and the guarantee of human rights can be extended to all responses to the epidemic - but only if our representatives and States are willing to work with us and raise the voice of exclusion. We no longer have time for political games while our people are still dying. “

Once again, our bodies are the battlefields ready to not let us win. The activism of the HIV response back to the front of the claim: as years ago claiming medication and treatment, today demanding that we not be left behind. Let’s break the silence. Let’s not leave anyone behind. This time, really.

More information: contacto@gay-latino.org # HLM2016AIDS #wearetheepidemic

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