Statements and Webcast
H.E. Mr. Ryuhei Kawada, Member of the IPU Advisory Group on HIV/AIDS
10 June 2011
- Statement: English (Check against delivery)
RYUHEI KAWADA, a member of the House of Councillors of Japan, speaking on behalf of the Inter-Parliamentary Union Advisory Group on HIV/AIDS, said that many countries had adopted positive legislation prohibiting discrimination against people living with HIV, and promoting legislation for HIV education for schoolchildren, and laws that instituted and protected harm-reduction services. However, laws that criminalized drug use, men having sex with men, and sex workers were a significant legal impediment to implementing those programmes. When a person was labelled as a criminal, it was harder for that person to receive treatment. Some countries had even criminalized HIV transmission. A lack of careful consideration of HIV-specific legislation could easily stigmatize people with HIV, de-motivate them from testing, and create a false sense of security. The IPU Advisory Group provided parliamentarians with access to relevant policy expertise and skills to properly exercise their duties of lawmaking, oversight, leadership and advocacy. Another key theme was access to medicines, and the Union also was providing guidance to support the enactment of appropriate intellectual property legislation and encourage achievement of universal access to treatment.