Sweden, USAID and UNDP renew support for LGBT rights in Asia

The Embassies of Sweden and the United States to Thailand, along with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) launched a US$8 million regional project to help safeguard the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people in Southeast and East Asia, in Bangkok today.

The 'Being LGBT in Asia – Phase 2' project will seek to strengthen and empower LGBTI regional civil society advocacy groups and community networks in China, Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand.

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[New resource] Know Your Rights, Use Your Laws

This handbook was written by a team of legal experts and reviewed by community activists working for improving the human rights situation of people with HIV and key populations most at risk of HIV. It is intended for people with HIV, people who are at higher risk of HIV, as well as their partners and family members.

The handbook describes, step by step, how to behave when a rights violation occur, how to document it and how to seek help – directly from the authorities, or with the free help of legal professionals. It is supplemented by a set of user-friendly forms and free legal aid contracts. This handbook was designed for the legal systems of the countries in Eastern Europe and the CIS. It is available in English and Russian.

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A Widow’s right to matrimonial property

When Justine Badaru a 38 year old, resident of Kijogoro Parish, Miirya Sub County, Masindi district lost her husband to an HIV/AIDs-related illness, she was left with no independent source of livelihood.

Illiterate and HIV positive herself, the mother of four was looking at a bleak future as a widow.

Soon after her husband's funeral, rumours started circulating in the village that she had killed her husband. The rumours which spread like a wildfire left Badaru dealing with not only grief but also with stigma and isolation as her friends shunned her as the rest of the village called her a witch and a murderer.

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Transgender and hijra activists call for improved health, living conditions and enabling legal environment

Kathmandu, Nepal – Transgender people and hijra activists from South Asia called for more evidence-informed policy and laws to improve health, living conditions and overall well-being of their communities, at a consultation this week in Kathmandu.

The three-day consultation, 'The South Asia Transgender and Hijra Consultation: Advancing Trans and Hijra Rights and Health', brought together over 70 participants, including transgender women, hijra and transgender men, civil society groups, government departments, national human rights institutions, development partners and HIV and health experts.

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Leaving no one behind in the Asia-Pacific HIV response

Bangkok, Thailand – Government delegates, leading civil society voices and UN partners gathered in Bangkok this week to review progress in responding to the HIV epidemic in the Asia Pacific region.

The Asia Pacific Intergovernmental Meeting on HIV and AIDS, currently being held at the UN Conference Centre from 28 to 30 January, has been convened by the UN Economic and Social Commission on Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) with support from UNAIDS, UNDP and other UN agencies.

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