Campaign success: What’s next?
08 October 2015
Thanks to everyone who supported our Write Us In! campaign earlier this year, your action helped to secure inclusive language in the new health goal.
The new sustainable development goals have been surrounded by the rhetoric of “leave no-one behind”, but the draft text for the universal health coverage (UHC) target, fell short of being truly universal.
Our campaign called for world leaders to ensure that all groups, including LGBT people, were covered in the health target - and, along with the work of others, we succeeded.
On 25 September 2015 in New York, the world watched as the United Nations formally adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and the new Global Goals.
Although LGBT people are not explicitly mentioned we now have inclusive language secured that opens the space for civil society at national level to advocate for essential healthcare and rights of LGBT people. The final UHC target text reads:
“Achieve universal health coverage, including financial risk protection, access to quality essential health-care services and access to safe, effective, quality and affordable essential medicines and vaccines for all.”
A better blueprint
Speaking to the press after the adoption of the Agenda, the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon said: “These goals are a blueprint for a better future. Now we must use the goals to transform the world. We will do that through partnership and through commitment. We must leave no-one behind."
This agenda is truly universal. It applies to high-income, middle-income and low-income countries alike. There is a large emphasis throughout the document on achieving equality, and empowerment of all citizens. It is a truly historic moment where 193 countries of the world came together to agree on how to ensure a better future for humanity.
The work continues
Now we will push for action to ensure these promises are put into practice.
The new goals provide us with a powerful advocacy tool to hold governments to account to ensure the realisation of human rights for all. Civil society now needs to hold national governments to account for the commitments they made in New York and we must work together to ensure that the historic opportunity to end AIDS by 2030 is not lost.
Our campaigning: What’s next?
The Alliance has made a commitment to champion the rights of marginalised people, and in particular to tackle increasing levels of criminalisation of LGBT people all over the world. When LGBT people are criminalised then they are effectively unable to get access to vital health services and medicine, including treatment for HIV and AIDS. It will be impossible to end AIDS until all people – regardless of their identity or sexuality – can get access to health services and treatment. 75+ countries have criminal laws against sexual activity by LGBT people. In the British Commonwealth, 40 out of 53 countries currently criminalise same-sex activity.
We don’t think this is right and our next campaign will challenge the criminalisation of LGBT people and call on Commonwealth leaders to do more.
Watch this space for more information on how we can work together to end AIDS!