World Human Rights Day (12/10): Struggles Persist for Transgender Individuals at-risk for HIV/AIDS

Published: December 9, 2014

The Rainbow Times
Original Article:

NEW YORK, NY –A new report released today by amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, and Global Action for Trans* Equality (GATE), highlights the ongoing struggle of transgender individuals across the globe in their fight for access to appropriate and effective HIV care and treatment.  For years data has shown that transgender individuals are disproportionately affected by HIV and AIDS, both in terms of increased risk of infection and the high number of them already living with the virus.

Today, however, transgender individuals are increasingly using the power of community organization and mobilization to demand not only an equal place in society, but timely access to relevant medical and other support services. The new report, Lessons from the Front Lines: Trans Health and Rights, profiles 10 dynamic community organizations with strong transgender leadership in nine diverse countries—Bolivia, China, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Georgia, Peru, South Africa, and Ukraine—that are working hard to change the status quo in transgender health and rights.

The report, supported in part by the Arcus Foundation and available in both English and Spanish, examines data on access to health services and legal protections for transgender individuals in different settings, and details how societal stigma and institutionalized discrimination come together to create nearly insurmountable challenges for these populations and the organizations that serve them. More importantly, however, the report describes how these grassroots groups have confronted, responded to, and in some cases solved, many of the myriad challenges that confront them. The organizations profiled, all current and past grantees of amfAR, have achieved their successes through a combination of personal courage, determination, teamwork, and employing bold and creative strategies.

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