This morning members of ACT UP Dublin gathered at the offices of the Department of Health in Hawkins House with a giant alarm clock to wake the public to Ireland’s HIV crisis. We want to rouse government, community stakeholders, and the public at large into action to address the ongoing epidemic.
This World AIDS Day we are changing the conversation, and drawing attention to the political dimensions of the epidemic. New HIV diagnoses are at an all-time high in Ireland and the government response is falling short.
We in the community are ready for new prevention options like PrEP. Further delay on PrEP will result in avoidable new transmissions. It’s time for all of us to break the silence and demand an effective response.
Our press release can be downloaded as a pdf here. The full text follows a few pics we took…
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WORLD AIDS DAY 2016: IRISH GOVERNMENT MUST DO MORE TO COMBAT THE EPIDEMIC
NOVEMBER 30, 10:00am , Hawkins House
On the eve of World AIDS Day, ACT UP Dublin is sounding an alarm to government, community stakeholders, and the public: Ireland is in the midst of an HIV crisis.
This morning in front of the Department of Health Offices at Hawkins House, ACT UP is installing an alarm clock to wake Ireland’s dormant institutions to the need for a renewed effort to address the expanding epidemic.
Thanks to advances in treatment and prevention, government has powerful new ways to reduce new HIV transmissions. ACT UP calls on authorities to do more than offer words. Government should devote greater resources, and take effective actions, to address the epidemic.
– In 2015, Ireland recorded the highest number of new HIV diagnoses ever in the history of the epidemic. Gay and bisexual men are particularly affected, now constituting over half of new diagnoses. Even accounting for those previously diagnosed elsewhere, new diagnoses in the LGBT community have been increasing for over a decade.
– More people in Ireland are living with HIV than ever before. Yet government and community organisations are not doing enough to meet our ongoing needs.
– Ireland’s public spending on HIV prevention is inadequate and lags behind peer countries.
– Government delay in making Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) available will result in entirely avoidable HIV infections.
– Government must adopt a comprehensive and coordinated HIV strategy that links clinical and community efforts to halt transmission of HIV and to care for those with the disease.
– Government should permanently fund community-based HIV rapid testing (Know Now) and increase funding for our overburdened existing sexual health services.
– Government should bring health surveillance efforts up to par with peer countries.
What is ACT UP?
ACT UP Dublin is a local chapter of ACT UP, The AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power, an international HIV activist organisation. ACT UP Dublin was founded in July 2016 to take action on Ireland’s HIV crisis. We seek a more urgent and effective response to HIV from government authorities, community organisations, and the public at large.