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After a process of review and consultation, the first Lady and president of the National Commission for the Control and Prevention of HIV (CONAVIH), Lorena Castillo de Varela, reaffirming her commitment to promote initiatives that promote and guarantee human rights, considers that draft of Bill 518, through which a new legal framework is established for the comprehensive approach to Sexually Transmitted Infections and the Human Immunodeficiency Virus, approved in the third debate, violates in some articles the principles of confidentiality, voluntariness of the test of HIV, human dignity and equality before the Law, creating a favorable environment for stigma and discrimination. 

The First Lady, who is also UNAIDS Special Ambassador for Latin America and Global Spokesperson for Zero Discrimination, believes that the presentation of this initiative was a decisive step that seeks to ensure recognition of those living or affected by HIV as dignified persons of rights that wish to participate actively in the sustained development of the country. 

“What was approved was not agreed upon by the members of CONAVIH, key groups and civil society organizations, and this was not an accurate reflection of the original proposal that we presented. The document underwent modifications within the National Assembly without the consensus of the majority of those involved in the issue, who for more than three years worked on an initiative that would allow the country to continue advancing in its commitment to guarantee the rights of the people who live with HIV, which is why I do not support these changes neither as presidentof CONAVIH nor as UNAIDS Special Ambassador for Latin America and Global Spokesperson of the Zero Discrimination movement”, Castillo de Varela said.

The President of the CONAVIH pointed out that any norm or initiative that is promulgated must have as main purpose to ensure and promote respect for human rights.

 

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