Ahead of the International Day Against Homophobia (17 May), the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched a new UNAIDS Action Framework on Universal Access for Men who have Sex with Men and for Transgender People. The Framework sets out how UNAIDS will facilitate and support universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support for men who have sex with men and transgender people.
The approach taken in the Framework aims to reduce the incidence of HIV everywhere, while protecting the health and rights of not only men who have sex with men and transgender people, but also their female sexual partners and the rest of the population. Responding to HIV among marginalized groups is therefore not just important in and of itself, it is often one of the most effective strategies to reduce heterosexual spousal transmission and to avert larger heterosexual epidemics. Universal access to appropriate HIV programmes for men who have sex with men and transgender people is a crucial part of achieving universal access as a whole.