11 Feb 2009

Police taking a bigger role in promoting AIDS awareness in Pacific

7:45 pm on 11 February 2009

The New Zealand Aids Foundation's Pacific branch says a new programme to be created by police in the Pacific will signficantly raise awareness about HIV and AIDS

Twenty one Pacific countries plan to introduce HIV awareness to their communities.

This comes after police officials from Asia Pacific countries unanimously agreed such awareness was a priority.

A health promoter of the New Zealand AIDS Pacific branch, Phylesha Brown-Acton is fully supportive of the police initiative.

"We have to understand in the Pacific that HIV and AIDS and human rights issues are very.... the impact of it is not fully discussed and the training behind it is not to that level where we in our western countries are at. What it (programme) will do is reduce the stigma and discrimination against those actual people living with HIV/ AIDS in the Pacific and it will support them."

Phylesha Brown-Acton of the New Zealand Aids Foundation.