Statement

World AIDS Day 2018

1 December 2018

Statement by UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem

To end AIDS, we must educate, empower and ensure everyone, everywhere, has access to sexual and reproductive health services and information. 

Educate. Comprehensive sexuality education, both in school and in the community, helps adolescents and young people learn how to protect themselves from HIV, other sexually transmitted infections and unintended pregnancy. 

Investing in life skills training for boys and young men can lead them to embrace respectful attitudes towards gender equality, safer sex and sexual and reproductive health.

Empower. UNFPA calls for the removal of all barriers to sexual and reproductive health services – whether legal, regulatory or social – that entrench inequality and deny people their sexual and reproductive health and rights. 

Everyone, including young people, men who have sex with men, sex workers, transgender persons and people who use drugs, must be able to freely exercise their human rights. When they can and when their needs are fully reflected in policy and programmes, sexual and reproductive health and HIV services are more effective.

Ensure access for everyone. True access means full access: to safe, non-judgmental and quality services that include HIV prevention and testing, condoms and effective treatment. 

Community-led services provide an opportunity to fast-track and scale up the global HIV response and to reach those most at risk.

On this World AIDS Day 2018, UNFPA, the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency, joins hands with partners, united in our resolve to prevent new HIV infections and to bring treatment to all who need it. 

UNFPA remains committed to promoting human rights, protecting sexual and reproductive health and rights and preventing new HIV infections. 

Together we can expand rights and choices, prevent new HIV infections and end AIDS!