CPC report by Memory Sachikonye
This was the first ever session on
the Black Diaspora (BD) in the history of IAS. The number of people of African
descent living outside of Africa is estimated at 140 million, most living in
the Western Hemisphere. When looking at rates of new HIV infections across many
high-income countries, BD populations are often disproportionately affected,
creating a disturbing global pattern of common disadvantage and inequity.
This breakthrough session explored
research, policy, prevention, advocacy and programmatic themes within a GIPA
context, with a focus on priorities and action plans, to address the need for a
coordinated global HIV framework for BD populations. Presenters 'connected the
dots' to ensure that the experiences of BD populations are not seen in
isolation, but rather as an interconnected phenomenon that warrants greater and
immediate global attention. An epidemiology of HIV rates among the BD showed
the high rates among within Europe and USA. Experiences were shared from
Canada, Brazil and Australia to demonstrate the issues people face when they
migrate. Brazil highlighted the elements for change as empowering women and the
BD communities; fighting racism and making public HIV policy.
The aim is to get HIV infections in
the BD population to zero. Gaps identified were:
Lack of clear information for
the BD population about services available to them.
Lack of standardization of care.
Inconsistent policies that
differ in the way migrants are treated
Obstacles at service delivery
that are barriers to prevention, care and treatment.
To get to zero, the meeting called
Measuring the epidemic - if it’s
not measured, it can’t be prevented. Understanding the prevalence better will
help address the issues.
Financing of programs that work
with BD populations on prevention, care and support.
Coordination of services to
meet the needs of the BD population in each region.