Terrence Higgins Trust outlines key HIV issues

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The UK’s largest HIV charity has outlined the four key issues it wants the next government to tackle.

After consulting with its members, Terrence Higgins Trust has called for compulsory and fully inclusive sex and relationships education (SRE) in all schools, with “appropriate sexual health and HIV content.”

Compulsory SRE has been pledged by several parties, including Labour. Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper spoke passionately about it at the PinkNews debate. Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg has blamed the Conservative party for the failure to deliver mandatory SRE during the last government.

THT have also asked the next government to make HIV a public health priority, “with effective funding, more varied testing options and access to the full range of prevention information and choices for all who need them”. Ending stigma around HIV in health care by increasing training of NHS and care staff is among the key issues for THT members.

They have also asked candidates and parties to pledge to commit to the Disability Benefits Consortium’s guidelines on supporting disabled people, to ensure people living with HIV can access appropriate support.

Chief Executive at Terrence Higgins Trust, Dr Rosemary Gillespie, said: “With more than 100,000 people living with HIV in the UK, we are determined to make sure their voices are heard loud and clear as election day approaches on 7th May.

“By acting on these key issues the next Government could dramatically reduce both HIV transmission, and the stigma and discrimination that so many of those with HIV face. No one can afford to be complacent.

“We urge voters to challenge candidates on these areas before the election, and hold them to account after they have been elected.”