Haughey marks World AIDS Day at Holyrood
MSP celebrates the launch of new book about HIV
Rutherglen MSP Clare Haughey joined with HIV Scotland to mark World AIDS Day in the Scottish Parliament and to celebrate the launch of the new book, ‘Disclosures: Rewriting the Narrative About HIV’.
The book collects poetry, stories, artwork, and non-fiction which challenge the image of what it means to have HIV in Scotland today. The foreword of the book is written by Scot’s Makar, Jackie Kay.
A person living with HIV, successfully on treatment, can achieve an undetectable level of HIV virus. This means not only they will be healthier, but will not pass the virus onto others.
Furthermore, the drug PrEP is a prevention measure where people who do not have the illness use medication to protect themselves from getting HIV. Scotland led the way by allowing PrEP on the NHS, expanding their prevention options and contributing to the global mission against HIV.
There are 5213 people diagnosed as living with HIV in Scotland, 368 of whom were reported last year.
Clare Haughey was one of a number of MSPs who met at parliament for World AIDS Day and mark the stigmabusting book’s publication.
“Stigma is still a huge issue for people living with HIV in Scotland. It is one of the biggest barriers to testing, can stop people from accessing treatment and support,” said Clare Haughey.
“Often people fear telling family, friends and partners their status which can lead to isolation and mental health problems. By working together and taking a strong position on addressing stigma, inequality and social exclusion, we can make a real difference to the lives of people living with HIV. This book is a new tool to educate and inform people about the modern-day realities of HIV, and I’m proud to support HIV Scotland’s work.”
Every year on December 1 people across the globe mark World AIDS Day: the international day to remember the 35 million people who have died worldwide from AIDS-related illnesses, to prevent new cases of HIV and to stand in solidarity with people living with the virus.
Support Clare Haughey MSP, right, with HIV Scotland representatives and fellow parliamentarians