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HIV/AIDS and Property Rights: Overcoming Barriers to Women’s Economic Empowerment


Significant strides have been made in the reduction of HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths since HIV was first identified in the 1980s. However, HIV still has a devastating impact on many populations, who are neglected and often overlooked. Women and Girls bear a disproportionate burden of the HIV epidemic. In 2015 there were an estimated 17.8 million women living with HIV (15 or older), with apprximately 8,600 new infections per week among adolescent girls and young women aged 15 to 24. Women and Girls often do not receive the same level of attention as other demographics. In many parts of the world, women living with or affected by HIV are often excluded from holding a job, inheriting and controlling property, and otherwise exercising economic independence. All these factors hamper the true economic empowerment of women. This interactive panel at the 61st United Nations Commission on the Status of Women focuses on the impact that HIV has on a woman's right to own and manage property. Panelists address stigma and discrimination toward women living with HIV, including deprivation or dispossession of property rights, and they share best practices and potential pathways to promote and protect women's economic equality.

Panelists

His Excellency Archbishop Bernardito Auza, Permanent Representative of the Holy See Mission to the UN

Sheila Dinotshe Tlou, Director of the UNAIDS Regional Support Team for Eastern and Southern Africa

Jane Ng'ang'a, National Coordinator of the International Netowrk of Religious Leaders Living with or Personally Affected by HIV (INERELA+) Kenya Chapter

Rev. Pauline Wanjiru Njiru, Regional Coordinator for Eastern Africa of the World Council of Churches - Ecumenical HIV and AIDS Initiatives for Advocacy (WCC-EHAIA)

Moderator

Rev. Thomas Brennan, Salesians of Don Bosco