Join Faith communities Asking Pres Zuma to Speak Out for Renewed Commitment to HIV Targets at UNGASS 05/2011
In 2011, world governments are reviewing the progress made in the HIV response over the last ten years, particularly the implementation of commitments made in UN Declarations in 2001 and 2006. Although much has been achieved, many of the goals of previous declarations have not been met.
A key outcome of the review will be a new declaration that is expected to be formally adopted by governments at a High-Level Meeting in New York on 8-10 June.(1)
Faith communities share the concern that the global economic crisis, the perception that HIV is no longer a major problem and other global challenges might cause a shift of focus away from HIV.
In a recent Letter to Partners 2011: UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé wrote: “World leaders gathering in New York for the General Assembly High Level Meeting on AIDS carry the responsibility of renewing hope and re-energizing the AIDS movement. The promises they make and words they speak at this meeting will define tomorrow’s agenda. Together, we can make this the defining decade, the decade that signals the beginning of the end of AIDS.....This is a time to scale up, not scale down.”(2)
On AIDS Candlelight Memorial Sunday, CABSA asked faith communities to pray specifically for this important meeting, for the leaders as they prepare, and for wisdom and insight as they make their decisions.
CABSA partners, Fontainebleau Community Church decided to invite congregants to sign a letter to President Jacob Zuma and the South African delegation to UNGASS. On 15 May 2011 205 church members signed letters to the president during the morning service. CABSA and FCC would like to invite fellow believers all over South Africa and in other parts of the world to be part of this.
Our letter to Pres Zuma Reads:
Together with fellow-believers of Fontainebleau Community Church, and with many other religious and non-religious people involved in the response on HIV and AIDS I call on you to use your influence and to speak out in favour of a renewed focus on the challenges that HIV and AIDS pose to the world community, and local communities alike.
We ask you to speak out in favour of support and funding for programs and activities that focus on prevention of further infections and that make treatment available to all people living with HIV and AIDS.
This should include those who are poor and who cannot afford medical aid, as well as orphans, women and other vulnerable groups.
You can read more about UNGASS 2011, find news reports and access background documents on the CABSA website.
1. Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance: UN Review on AIDS 2011: Talking Points for National Advocacy by Religious Leaders and Faith-Based Organizations
2. Letter to Partners 2011: UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé