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Women and girls living with HIV/AIDS: Overview and annotated bibliography

HIV/AIDS is both driven by and entrenches gender inequality, leaving women more vulnerable than men to its impact. This report - consisting of an overview, annotated bibliography, and contacts section - considers the specific challenges faced by women and girls who are living with HIV and AIDS. Women's social, economic, and legal disadvantage is exacerbated by a positive HIV status, and vice versa. Violations of women's social, economic, and legal rights in turn obstruct their ability to seek care, treatment and support, and to realise their sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR).

In many contexts, social and cultural values surrounding the importance of female purity mean that women and girls living with HIV and AIDS are also subject to greater discrimination than men. Sex workers, drug users, prisoners and migrants may face additional stigma. Women and girls living with HIV/AIDS are calling for recognition of their fundamental human rights, including their SRHR and the right to decide whether or not to have children; their meaningful involvement at all stages of the policy-making process; and government provision of accessible and equitable healthcare. (Report by BRIDGE in collaboration with The International Community of Women Living with HIV/AIDS (ICW), February 2007)

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