African Human Rights Law Journal - Volume 14, Issue 2, 2014
Volume 14, Issue 2, 2014
HIV is not for me : a study of African women who have sex with women's perceptions of HIV/AIDS and sexual health : focus : sexual and reproductive health rights and the African Women's ProtocolSource: African Human Rights Law Journal 14, pp 757 –786 (2014)More Less
Women who have sex with women face a unique, yet under-researched set of HIV/AIDS-related risks in sub-Saharan Africa. The findings of this study highlights a tension that, on the one hand, exists between the heteronormativity of healthcare providers and broader society, and the ways in which this silences lesbians and other women who have sex with women in their healthcare interactions and, on the other, the totalising view of WSW sexualities within this community, which silences conversations about HIV because such conversations may expose or accuse a person of 'not being a real lesbian'. The women within the African lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) community who participated in our study had scant access to credible HIV/AIDS and safe-sex information, resulting in various and dangerous (mis)conceptions proliferating. The vulnerability of lesbians and other WSW to HIV infection is a complicated public health issue that is perplexing to some and ignored by many, not only on the African continent, but globally. Our research indicates that some WSW engage in high-risk behaviour that places them at an increased risk for HIV transmission. Furthermore, a lack of access to inclusive prevention and healthcare services and an unwillingness to seek treatment are often the consequence of stigma and discrimination and point to distinct inequalities for female-identified LGBTI persons. The study explored the prevailing perceptions of women within the LGBTI community on HIV/AIDS, using various fora, including social media sites, anonymous surveys and anecdotes shared anonymously with the organisation, and which highlights the urgent need for specifically-tailored sexual health and HIV-preventative and coping strategies toward improved health outcomes and an understanding of this vulnerable group. In addition, the experience of our participants demonstrated a strong demand for LGBTI health needs training for healthcare professionals, with a specific focus on the depathologisation of LGBTI identities on the continent. Potential strategies and further research in this community are suggested.
The chains of justice. The global rise of state institutions for human rights, Sonia Cardenas : recent publicationsAuthor Ayebaesin Jacob BeredugoSource: African Human Rights Law Journal 14, pp 787 –791 (2014)More Less
Since their formal creation in the 1940s, national human rights institutions (NHRIs) have moved very rapidly from the fringes to occupy a prominent space in human rights discourse. International human rights standards are important for securing and sustaining human dignity and, therefore, need to find concrete expression at the domestic level to be relevant. This goal inspired the United Nations (UN) to encourage states to consider the desirability of establishing NHRIs to advance the domestic promotion and protection of human rights. The desire of the UN in this regard has since been realised with the global proliferation of these institutions. The story about the emergence and remarkable diffusion of NHRIs across the globe is what Cardenas relays in her book Chains of justice. The global rise of state institutions for human rights.