World AIDS Campaign 2002–2003. A conceptual framework and basis for action : HIV/AIDS stigma and discrimination

The World AIDS Campaign for the years 2002–2003 will focus on stigma and discrimination. The main objective of the campaign is to prevent, reduce and ultimately eliminate HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination, wherever it occurs and in all its forms. Stigma and discrimination associated with HIV and AIDS are the greatest barriers to preventing further infections, providing adequate care, support and treatment and alleviating impact. Self-stigmatization, or the shame that people living with HIV/AIDS experience when they internalize the negative responses and reactions of others can lead to depression, withdrawal and feelings of worthlessness. Discrimination against those living with HIV/AIDS, or presumed to be infected is a violation of human rights. All individuals have a right to equal respect and dignity, whatever their health status. The aim of this conceptual framework is to: create a common understanding of HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination; highlight some existing interventions targeting HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination, and contribute to effective ways of preventing stigma and challenging discrimination when it occurs, and monitoring and redressing human rights violations.

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