New legislation will require most public sector bodies, (including education, NHS, housing, local authorities and the police), to publish a disability equality scheme by 4 December 2006. This is a proactive duty which aims to tackle institutional discrimination and hate crime as well as promote equal opportunities for disabled people.
HIV is defined in law as a disability and NAT’s Disability Equality Scheme, guide sets out clear steps for senior managers in drawing up a disability equality scheme that addresses the needs of people living with HIV.
NAT is working with HIV Scotland to produce a tailored version to public services in Scotland. The guide will also be translated into Welsh.
Deborah Jack, Chief Executive of the National AIDS Trust said:
“Discrimination and inequality remains a real problem for many people living with HIV, and harassment, hate crime and unfair dismissal still occur.
“This new duty on the public sector to proactively address disability discrimination is an opportunity to turn around the lives of people living with HIV, who deserve the same treatment and chances as anyone else.”
HIV and your Disability Equality Scheme includes advice on:
Involving people living with HIV
Building up a demographic profile of people with HIV
The specific needs of those with HIV
Examples of HIV discrimination
Best practice in addressing HIV in a disability equality scheme
Key HIV facts
Over 60,000 people living with HIV in the UK (1 in 3 undiagnosed)
47% were infected through heterosexual sex
43% diagnosed are gay or bisexual men
38% diagnosed are black Africans
Almost 20,000 children affected by HIV in the UK, where one or more parent is living with HIV
Half of all people living with HIV are seen for care in London
To obtain copies of HIV and your Disability Equality Scheme, visit www.nat.org.uk or call 020 7 814 67 59.