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Caribbean Vulnerable Communities Coalition (CVC) Launches “Do You Dare” CampaignCampaign aims to challenge people, governments, key populations (KPs) and civil society organizations to be change agents.

July 5, 2018

The HIV response could fit into the “Truth or Dare” pretext in which participants are given the choice between answering a question truthfully or performing a “dare”.

Here are some truths. Although there have been significant advances in the HIV response in the Caribbean, particularly the downward trend in HIV prevalence in the general population, some members of our key populations (KPs) still face challenges. These groups include marginalized children and youths, sex workers, men who have sex with men, persons in prison and drug users.

Another truth, based on epidemiological evidence, there is a high HIV prevalence amongst vulnerable groups. Their vulnerability is due to a combination of factors such as high levels of stigma and discrimination; human rights abuses and laws that impede access of KPs to health care as well as various other social services.

The reality is that the way forward cannot be truth or dare, but truth and dare. Knowing the truth is not enough. “Do You Dare” to take a stand? The campaign launched by Caribbean Vulnerable Communities Coalition (CVC), has at its core the specific objective of utilizing a range of communications strategies to challenge people, governments, key populations (KPs) and civil society organizations to be change agents.

“If we are to achieve the global community 90-90-90 goals by 2020, we will have to be bold and do things a little differently. We have to dare our target audiences to embrace and find ways to hold people accountable for some of the changes we wish to see,” said Ivan Cruickshank, CVC’s Executive Director.

He added that “the intention of “Do You Dare” is to catalyze a strong momentum at regional and national levels. I believe if these dares resonate with the right people, we will be well on our way to achieving the goals are for 90% of persons to be diagnosed,  placed on treatment and be virally suppressed.”

“Do You Dare” is aimed at ensuring that:

  • HIV responders and duty bearers are more responsive to the needs of KPs
  • 2020 commitments and best practices in increasing access among key populations more widely disseminated
  • Responders and duty bearers demonstrate increased awareness of best practices
  • Commitments are given to replicate best practices and scale up programmes and services
  • Concrete actions are taken to reduce barriers, replicate best practices and scale up services

Ivan Cruickshank, CVC – I dare civil society to continue to fight for inclusion to ensure each citizen has a right to their existence within a particular space.

Dr. Carolyn Gomes, Human Rights Advocate – I dare the governments of the region to fully fund the HIV response.

Neish McLean, Transwave Ja – I dare regional bodies to work together to allow trans persons to update gender markers on legal documents.

Jairo Rodriquez, LGBT Advocate – I dare the government to create policies that would make everyone comfortable in accessing health care.