Countries around the world celebrated Zero Discrimination Day for the first time yesterday. The day was an opportunity for people everywhere to promote and celebrate everyone’s right to live a full life with dignity.
UNAIDS Country Director for PNG Stuart Watson said, the Day is a moment to highlight how everyone can become informed to promote tolerance, compassion and peace. “Stigma and discrimination are widespread in Papua New Guinea and present a forbidding barrier to many people receiving prevention related information and resources, care, treatment and support,” said Director Watson.
“We still have laws and policies on the books in Papua New Guinea which hamper the AIDS response and compromise the human rights of key affected communities and individuals because of their sexual orientation, their gender identity, or other personal characteristic or behavior.”
He said, discrimination is not only a violation of human rights but illegal, immoral, hurtful and dehumanizing.
The symbol for Zero Discrimination is the butterfly, widely recognized as a sign of transformation.