XVIII International AIDS Conference


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Ready to report? Attitudes held by vulnerable groups in Jamaica toward reporting and pursuing redress of incidents of non-HIV related discrimination

A. Hron

Jamaica AIDS Support for Life, Kingston, Jamaica

Issues: In 2007, National HIV/STI Programme in Jamaica initiated the development of a national system for the collection and redress of HIV related discrimination complaints. Today, there is growing recognition that discrimination not associated with HIV is also influencing sexual and health seeking behaviors in vulnerable groups such as MSM and sex workers. Data provided by non-HIV related complaint reports will be crucial in understanding and mitigating the impact of this discrimination on HIV vulnerability. But will these highly stigmatized populations come forward to report discrimination and will they be interested in supporting redress interventions? This study provides answers to those question.
Description: The findings of this study are based on the results of focus groups conducted with MSM and sex workers. The groups were comprised of persons who were HIV positive and those who were not. The data was analyzed to identify differences and similarities within and between vulnerable groups. Attitudes toward reporting both HIV related and non-HIV related discrimination was assessed.
Lessons learned: The study identified attitudes on several important factors to be considered when developing a system for collecting discrimination complaints. The findings revealed attitudes on comfort levels within vulnerable groups in reporting various kinds of discrimination, preferred locations for submitting complaints, preferred entity for managing complaints, willingness to pursue redress options, and recommendations for improving reporting.
Next steps: These findings will be used to guide decision making related to the proposed development of a non-HIV related discrimination reporting and redress system for vulnerable groups.

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