IAS – the International AIDS Society – and its Conference Committee are optimizing community participation and accountability through a transparent selection process that will rotate conferences across the five regions of the world. Out of the next six conferences, five will take place in the southern hemisphere. This increases to seven, if one also considers AIDS 2028 and AIDS 2030 that are set to take place in Asia Pacific / Africa, following the logic of the global rotation.
The Global Networks of People living with HIV (GNP+), Global Action for Trans Equality (GATE), International Community of Women Living with HIV (ICW), Global Network of Young People Living with HIV (Y+ Global) and ASHA Foundation fully support this decision.
As civil society partners, we have worked to ensure robust community participation at the biennial International AIDS Conference, IAS Conference on HIV Science and HIV Research for Prevention Conference. We have advocated for conferences to be held in countries where the rights of key populations are respected, where there is local government support, and where long-term viability is upheld.
As a community, we have learnt the lessons of the AIDS conferences in recent years. We continue to advocate that communities are at the centre of political participation and decision making at all major political and scientific conferences on HIV and AIDS. This includes a call on decision makers to address the barriers that prevent community engagement, as well as a call on IAS to strengthen the civil society space with a participatory and representative approach from communities, researchers and policy makers. We understand the barriers to meaningful participation of our diverse communities of people living with HIV and people in key populations, and we understand the challenges facing communities in the global south.
We are committed to advancing community engagement efforts to overcome these challenges and ensure the meaningful participation of people living with HIV. Efforts will be developed in the coming months to facilitate, communicate, discuss and simplify community engagement processes and increase activist ownership of the political and scientific spaces within these conferences.
Together, we are working to ensure accessibility for our diverse communities around the world. Please look out for upcoming initiatives driven by civil society this year.
Nothing about us without us!
Read IAS Statement here: https://www.iasociety.org/news/ias-announces-global-rotation-all-its-conferences