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22.08.2006 Health

Ghana To Host International HIV/AIDS Workshop

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Ghana is to host an international workshop on HIV/AIDS to share the experiences of People Living With HIV/AIDS (PLWHA).

The workshop scheduled for October 18 - 20, 2006, would focus on the human rights abuses of PLWHA and propose mechanisms to encourage good practices.

International and local academics, government representatives, researchers and civil society activists would also critically analyse and share issues on HIV/AIDS and Human Rights on the third day of the meeting.

The Ghana Aids Commission (GAC) in Partnership with the African Commission of Health and Human Rights Promoters - Ghana, (CAPSDH-Ghana) a non-governmental organization for the defence and promotion of human rights in Africa through education, research and advocacy, are the main organisers.

Speaking to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Accra, Dr Edmund N. Delle, CAPSDH-Ghana President, explained that the goal was to promote dialogue and discussion on HIV/AIDS to increase knowledge and cooperation to facilitate planning of effective action to strengthen the human rights of victims.

They would hold intensive discussions and dialogue on the intersection between human rights and practices of HIV/AIDS education, prevention, care, and treatment.

The role of human rights in advancing the fight against the epidemic and the need to adhere to their principles and beliefs in the campaign against HIV/AIDS, and to uphold them for infected people would also be highlighted.

He said it would also serve as a platform for experts and patients to share findings and experiences on discrimination and stigmatisation, facilitate regional dialogue on the human rights and HIV/AIDS and propose recommendations to the public, governments and policy makers for legislation on the issues for the creation of more effective support system for PLWHAs.

Topics to be discussed include, "The role that human rights have played and could play in advancing the fight against the epidemic", "The intersection between human rights and the practices of HIV/AIDS education, prevention, care, and treatment".

"The roles and responsibilities of key organization in upholding human rights", "The experiences of stigmatisation and discrimination by PLWHA", "The relevant policies, laws and guidelines to protect the rights of PLWHAs and vulnerable groups across Africa".

It would also seek to answer questions on how to promote enforcement of the laws, the role of government, national institutions and NGOs in the promotion and protection of human rights.

They would also share lessons on discrimination and stigmatisation in Africa and what should be response of NGOs, the private sector; individuals could do outside government to reduce stigmatisation and discrimination.

The participants would also consider how to encourage regional co-operation to improve humanitarian situations and create more support systems through a platform and network for regional dialogue.

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