International AIDS Conference PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 24 August 2006
Making the Links' Don Kossick was at the recent International AIDS conference in Toronto, and wrote the following reflections on the struggle against the AIDS pandemic.
 
I recently attended the International AIDS conference in Toronto,  and wanted to tell you about the tremendous energy there in fighting the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

Over 23,000 people were gathered together  talking about how good prevention methods and good treatment procedures can give us all hope in turning the tide.
 
However, you could sense that the good news will go no where if Canada and other nations do not meet what communities need -  who are on the front line in the AIDS fight. Canada has to remove the red tape  on Canada's law for exporting lower cost retro viral drugs; we have to promote the unconditional cancellation of 100 per cent of the debt carried by developing nations so they can invest in their health systems; we have to support the training of health workers who can work with communities on prevention and treatment programs; we have to meet our commitment of  5 per cent of what is needed by the  global fund to fight AIDS, and actually put 0.7 per cent of national income into overseas development assistance - a previous committment we have yet to honour.
 
All of this can be done. Women, grandmothers, youth are mobilizing throughout the world. It is not enough for the Bill Gates, Bill Clintons and Stephen Lewis's to be there to support them. We all have to be alongside as well.
 
It was a sad moment for Canada when our Prime Minister did not attend the most important gathering on the world's most important health crisis. However, we as Canadian citizens can tell our government that it is time to deliver.
 
Sincerely,
 
Don Kossick

Last Updated ( Thursday, 04 January 2007 )
 
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