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Building Synergies Across Movements “Strategies from the South” & Foundation for Studies and Research on Women (FEIM) AWID Forum, 14-17 November 2008 Cape.

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Presentation on theme: "Building Synergies Across Movements “Strategies from the South” & Foundation for Studies and Research on Women (FEIM) AWID Forum, 14-17 November 2008 Cape."— Presentation transcript:

1 Building Synergies Across Movements “Strategies from the South” & Foundation for Studies and Research on Women (FEIM) AWID Forum, November 2008 Cape Town, South Africa Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights and HIV/AIDS

2 Sexual and reproductive health and especially women’s needs are often not considered in the response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Women’s health and sexual and reproductive health activists do not usually incorporate the response to HIV/AIDS into their work. Lack of attention to women’s and girls’ needs in HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment, care and support services. WHY? November 2008, Cape Town

3 To foster cross-issue collaborative action between major activist network from Africa, Asia and Latin America seeking more effective international advocacy on issues of HIV/AIDS, sexual and reproductive health and rights, and human rights. The Dialogue concluded that a shift in the current HIV/AIDS discourse is necessary to put power and sexuality issues back on the table, within the broader framework of respect for human rights. November 2008, Cape Town GOAL

4 This South-South dialogue brought together representatives of HIV/AIDS, sexual and reproductive health, sex workers and rights, and women and human rights networks from Asia, Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean. November 2008, Cape Town WHO IS INVOLVED?

5 Promote collaboration between HIV/AIDS, sexual and reproductive health and rights and women/human rights activists about sexuality and health as they relate to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Develop a working relationship between these groups of activists and networks. Create partnerships among participants to carry out international advocacy more effectively. Articulate a theorical framework that incorporates all those visions. Where disagreements occur, specify the problems and differences and draw up accords for future discussion and analysis. SPECIFIC OBJECTIVES November 2008, Cape Town

6 Why bring these networks together? Sexual and reproductive rights are an essential part of the HIV/AIDS response. Differences and disputes for representation among networks gave sexual rights opponents more chances to win. Building alliances is fundamental for: –Improving international advocacy and the response to the epidemic –Slowing down the growth of the epidemic –Strengthening the demands of all the networks involved November 2008, Cape Town

7 International and Regional Dialogues During 2006 and 2007 the networks convened internationally and regionally to discuss six controversial issues:  Sexualities and vulnerabilities: risk groups?  Abortion and sexual and reproductive rights  Adolescent sexuality education  Gender-based violence  Limits to current approaches in prevention and treatment  Vertical vs. integrated funding programs November 2008, Cape Town

8 CONSENSUSES Adopt a comprehensive approach to prevention and treatment, that addresses underlying sexual and gender power relations that make women and sexually diverse populations more vulnerable to HIV/AIDS. Eliminate barriers such us sexuality taboos and restrictions to sexuality education for girls and boys. Support sex workers rights and to use harm reduction approaches, as well as eliminate the association of prostitution to trafficking. Influence policy makers to address the intersections between gender-based violence and HIV/AIDS for women, girls, GLTTTB and drug users. November 2008, Cape Town

9 LESSONS LEARNED Networks recognized the need to develop and strengthen south-south cooperation because the three regions face similar problems and constraints. There are more consensuses than differences and joint advocacy is possible. Sustainable capacity building is possible and does not require exceptional resources. November 2008, Cape Town

10 LAC Dialogue (April 2007) An agreement was adopted about the need to support sex workers rights and to use a “harm reduction approach” to prevent HIV/AIDS. To defend girls’ and women’s reproductive rights independent of their HIV status. All countries in LAC are influenced by policies from the United States as well as religious groups, principally the Catholic Church, and this helped the discussion for a more united approach. To demand better counting of universal treatment by governments and UN Agencies in the region due to problems with how they estimate nowadays. November 2008, Cape Town

11 Africa Dialogue (May 2007) Participants identified specific strategies to realize organizational synergy in HIV/AIDS and sexual and reproductive health and rights. Difficulties that generally impede advocacy for vulnerable groups and adolescent sexuality education. A strong taboo that exists in Africa with respect to addressing sex and sexuality issues, the stigma of GLBT and HIV/AIDS, differing views on the appropriateness, when and how to educate adolescents, communication between groups, resources, and donor-driven initiatives and priorities. continue… November 2008, Cape Town

12 Africa Dialogue (May 2007) … continue A need for integrated programs in Africa exists because HIV has shifted away most of the attention that SRH used to enjoy. SRH services are not only critical for people living with HIV/AIDS but that they can also be an entry point for HIV prevention and treatment in African communities. November 2008, Cape Town

13 Asia Dialogue (July 2007) The recognition that while social movements were beginning to talk, there was a need for continued engagement through more participatory-style discussions so that movements can “buy in” to other cross-cutting issues. For example, the sex workers movement. The anti-prostitution pledge pushed for by the anti- sex worker constituency of the U.S. has resulted in funding programs like the United States PEPFAR. “100% condom” program has resulted in the violation of the rights of sex workers, many of whom have been rounded up, arrested, and undergone mandatory HIV and AIDS testing. November 2008, Cape Town

14 Achievements in joint advocacy: Advocacy Paper “From Words to Action” for UNGASS 2008 Urging governments to adopt actions such as:  Reaffirm the need to urgently implement a response to HIV transmission for LGTTTB, sex workers, women, girls, young people, injecting and non-injecting drug users, migrant workers and rural populations, recognizing that effective HIV prevention is undermined by actions that stigmatize or marginalize these groups. continue… November 2008, Cape Town

15 …continue  Reaffirm commitments to women's and girls’ rights, including access to sexual and reproductive health care and all contraception methods, including the female condom, recognizing that this is a rights issue and not just a health issue, due to the obstacles women face in negotiating safe sex in relationships.  Recognize the human rights violations implicit in anti- trafficking laws that make all prostitution illegal, eliminate “Raid, Rescue and Restore” missions with sex workers and their compulsory detention and rehabilitation and address the structural issues behind sex work, such as gender, class and race. November 2008, Cape Town

16 International AIDS Conference, Mexico, 2008 “Strategies from the South” organized the “Hot Topics” Networking Zone in the Global Village to open up dialogues between scientists, government representatives and community activists on controversial issues, such as:  “Sex Work, Not Trafficking”  “The Invisibility of Lesbians (WSW) in the Epidemic”  “Violence Against Women and HIV/AIDS”  “The New PEPFAR and its Implications”  “Sexual Freedom or Abstinence: The Voice of Youth ” November 2008, Cape Town

17 WHO WE ARE? ActionAid International / AfriCASO / AMANITARE / APCASO / APN+ / APNSW / Asia Pacific Rainbow / ARROW / AWHRC / CAFRA / CARAM Asia / Caribbean Harm Reduction Coalition (CHRC) / CIAT/ITPC / CLADEM / Coalition of African Lesbians (CAL)/ CRN+ / FEMNET / IAWC / ICW Africa / ICW Asia Pacific / IPPF WHR / LACCASO / LACHWN-RSMLAC / Lentswe la Rona / MLCM+ / NAP+ / NAPY / Network of Sex Work Projects (NSWP) / RedLA+ / RedLAC / RedTraSex / Seven Sisters / SWAA / Youth Coalition for Sexual and Reproductive Rights (YCSRR) November 2008, Cape Town

18 Future actions for strengthening collaboration among networks  Continue building joint advocacy Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights and HIV/AIDS  Open up dialogue to more networks to build effective advocacy November 2008, Cape Town


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