Andy Seale, Anurita Bains, and Sam Avrett

Health and Human Rights 12/1

Published June 2010

Abstract

After almost three decades of work to address HIV and AIDS, resources are still failing to adequately address the needs of the most affected and marginalized groups in many societies. In recognition of this ongoing failure, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (the Global Fund) has approved a sexual orientation and gender identities (SOGI) Strategy. The Strategy is designed to help its investments more effectively reach men who have sex with men; transgender populations; male, female, and transgender sex workers; and women who have sex with women. The Global Fund financing model is unique and based on ideas of broad partnership. It emphasizes the importance of country-ownership while ensuring that work is appropriately targeted, evidence-based, and rooted in principles of human rights. The classic international development tension of pursuing a rights-based agenda while also supporting strong country ownership has moved the Global Fund into a more substantive technical, advocacy, and policy arena, resulting in the creation of the SOGI Strategy, which emphasizes the needs of marginalized groups. A strong commitment to participation and consultation was crucial during the development stages of the Strategy. Now, as the Strategy goes live, it is clear that progress will only be achieved through continued and strengthened partnership. The diverse partners — in particular the governments and other stakeholders in recipient countries that helped develop the Strategy — must now commit to stronger collaboration on this agenda and must demonstrate bold leadership in overcoming the considerable technical and political challenges of implementation that lie ahead.

 
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