As the Executive Director of UNAIDS, I lead the work of the United Nations to tackle AIDS. I’m also someone who has lost family members to AIDS. This is personal. Both my own family experience and our collective experience at the United Nations have highlighted the same key lesson: the struggle to beat AIDS is inseparable from the struggle for women’s rights and from the struggle against all forms of discrimination. AIDS can be beaten, but it will only be beaten if we take on the social and economic injustices that perpetuate it and spur more scientific innovations to address the real needs of women and girls and people living with and vulnerable to HIV.
Feminism, human rights and zero discrimination are values deeply rooted across the world: they express our humanity, our recognition that I am because you are. And they are central to the struggle to beat AIDS. Let us beat AIDS. It can be done.