Millions of people suffering from HIV have for decades seen their needs ignored. Life-saving prevention and treatment that should reach everyone is often non-existent, arbitrary, or dependent on geography, gender, age or background.
"Closing the gap" is the theme of this year's World AIDS Day and it focuses on reducing the disparities in service provision that create these powerful inequities.
The UNAIDS campaign calls on everyone to empower and enable people everywhere to receive the evidence-based prevention and treatment they need. This means a level playing field for everyone by closing the testing, treatment and prevention access gaps.
UNODC assists people who use drugs, and people in prisons. Countries can help stem the epidemic among these populations, and by doing so, lend their support to the global target of ending AIDS by 2030.
But these gaps cannot be overcome without confronting the stigma, discrimination, and human rights breaches. No one facing HIV should be left behind or ignored. Laws and policies need to be reviewed to ensure drug users and prisoners have access to the necessary services, including harm reduction.
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