News

UNAIDS: Terms of Reference for the Dialogue-Platform on the Rights of women living with HIV 2014-2015

12 May, 2014
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By: UNAIDS

I. Background

In December 2012, the UNAIDS Secretariat created a dialogue-platform to support effective and meaningful participation of women living with HIV in UNAIDS policy and programmatic dialogues, in particular related to social transformation. In addition, the platform was meant to enable UNAIDS to benefit from the guidance of women living with HIV in regards to key emerging issues faced by women living with HIV. Throughout 2013, the platform functioned under the leadership of UNAIDS Rights, Gender, Prevention and Community Mobilization Department (RGPC), with the support and coordination of a consultant.

The terms of reference of the platform established that it would operate from December 2012 until December 2013, at which point, it would be reviewed, in order to determine next steps. As such, in February 2014 a survey was launched to gather the views of the members of the platform in this review process and UNAIDS Secretariat staff met to discuss the need to reconceptualise the structure and functions of the platform. Drawing upon the inputs gathered throughout the review, new terms of reference for the dialogue platform have been developed and are hereby presented.

II. Overview

UNAIDS is highly committed to moving towards universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support, calling specific attention to women and girls, through its 2011-2015 Strategy “Getting to zero”. This is in line with the UNAIDS Agenda for Accelerated Country Action for Women, Girls, Gender Equality and HIV (hereinafter, Agenda for Women and Girls). The Agenda for Women and Girls focuses on country-level action, capitalizing on the role of the UN joint teams on AIDS and fostering country leadership. It addresses the rights and needs of women and girls and highlights opportunities to work with networks of women and girls living with HIV and diverse women’s groups, while engaging men and boys, working toward achieving gender equality.

The meaningful involvement of people living with HIV, especially of women living with HIV, is an integral principle of the Agenda. As such, UNAIDS strives to ensure that its work, key messages, initiatives and programmes reflect and communicate diverse realities, needs and rights of women living with HIV.

The dialogue-platform builds on the leadership, internally and externally, of women living with HIV, to support and advance their rights. It is positioned within the UNAIDS Positive Health, Dignity and Prevention (PHDP) framework and highlight its values, particularly: “Responding to the needs of key populations, including the particular and specific needs of young people and women, and through respectful programmes tailored to specific contexts and the diversity among people living with HIV”.

The platform is complimentary and strives to work in collaboration with other initiatives related to women and HIV, including but not limited to the Global Coalition on Women and AIDS (GCWA).

III. Purpose of the Dialogue-Platform (2014-2015)

The dialogue-platform will serve as an advisory, consultation mechanism for UNAIDS Secretariat to engage with in regards to three main areas:

  • addressing violence against women and achieving zero-tolerance to gender-based violence;
  • advancing the sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) of women in all of their diversity; and
  • positioning the needs and rights of women living with HIV in the post-2015 development framework

IV. Composition of the Dialogue-Platform

All members will be women openly living with HIV. Members of the dialogue platform will be appointed by UNAIDS Secretariat, with membership platform including:

  • At least one member closely connected and working with to ICW Global
  • At least one member closely connected and working with GNP+
  • All members must be able to demonstrate ties to international, regional and or national networks of people/women living with HIV
  • Women who have previous experience of collaboration with UNAIDS, particularly in regards to the areas of addressing violence against women and SRHR
  • Women who are familiar with the post-2015, Cairo and/or Beijing processes

Efforts will be taken to ensure that membership includes a diversity of women living with HIV, including young women and women from key populations. While members of the 2013 dialogue platform are eligible to apply, at least ¾ of the 2014-2015 membership will be new.

V. Operations

The platform will work by:

  • Regular conference calls
  • Communication via e-mail
  • One annual in-person meeting, pending funding.

UNAIDS Secretariat Rights, Gender, Prevention and Community Mobilisation Department will support the functioning and operations of the dialogue-platform.

VI. Minimum participation requirements

Although membership is voluntary and non-remunerated, platform members are expected to actively participate. Minimum requirements are:

  • response to at least 80% of requests for written feedback
  • attendance of at least 60% of all teleconferences.

Members who do not satisfy the above minimum participation criteria will be contacted to resolve the barriers to participation, if possible (e.g., technical issues, communication challenges, lack of time, etc.). If the barrier is not resolved then UNAIDS Secretariat RGPC department will inform the platform members and a decision on possible replacement will be taken by UNAIDS. If the RGPC department does not receive any input and/or response from the member, the member will be removed from the platform membership.

VII. Resigning from the Dialogue-Platform

Members are free to resign at any time. Those who may desire to step down are requested to, if such case arises, alert the RGPC Department as soon as possible in order to allow for the identification of a replacement.

VIII. Timeline

The 2014-2015 dialogue-platform will operate from July 2014 until December 2015. At that point, it will be reviewed based on the progress made, in order to determine next steps.

IX. Process for nominations

Interested candidates are requested to complete the below form and send it to UNAIDS Secretariat:

  • Name of applicant:
  • Country of origin:
  • Country of residence: Contact details: Are you openly living with HIV? 
  • What is your age?
  • Supporting organization (please enclose a letter of support)
  • Which constituencies do you identify as being a part of? (i.e. please name any key population you identify as)
  • Why would you like to be part of the platform and what would you see yourself contributing to it? Please refer to your experience in regards to addressing violence against women and SRHR.
  • Have you been engaged in the post-2015, Cairo and/or Beijing processes? How?
  • What do you think the relevance of the above-mentioned processes are for women living with HIV?
  • How would you reach out to your constituency if engaged in this platform?

All applications should be sent to ahumadac@unaids.org by 1 June 2014.