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AFRICA- Ignoring the facts on AIDS and disability


AFRICA- Ignoring the facts on AIDS and disability

The exclusion of disabled people living with HIV in Africa is so entrenched that they were even marginalised at the latest international conference on the disease, according to disabled rights activists.

Rights groups claim that many of their members were shut out of the opening ceremony of the 15th International Conference on AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections in Africa (ICASA) held in Dakar, Senegal, last week, because they could not access the room. The only entrance to the amphitheatre that did not have stairs was reserved for the President of Senegal.

Africa has an estimated 80 million disabled people - around 10 percent of each country’s population, according to a 2004 survey by the World Bank - but disabled people have largely been left out of responses to the epidemic.