Change Magazine January 2018 Issue - Page 44

INDONESIA Grassroots Voices SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED INFECTIONS: SHOULD THE SUFFERER BE EXILED? Pranichia Islamy Resya According to the data of The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), 620,000 people are living with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). 38,000 people on the other hand are reported to have died due to the Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). HIV/AIDS is an infectious disease that can possibly be transmitted through either of the following methods: unprotected sexual intercourse with a person who has contracted HIV, use of unsterilized syringe, or the pregnancy of a woman who is positive of HIV. To put things in a clearer view, it should be understood that AIDS itself is a condition or syndrome that is caused by HIV. A person with HIV does not necessarily have AIDS but having the virus might lead to the weakening of a person’s immune system which can eventually cause AIDS. HIV/AIDS however, is not the only disease that is transmitted through sexual intercourse. According to World Health Organizations (WHO), there are at least 30 types of microbes (bacteria, viruses, and 40 Change Magazine January 2018 parasites) that can be transmitted through sexual contact. religion, corresponding to Article 28J. other related human rights for all communities of GWL in Indonesia. It is also a known fact that HIV identified to be easily transmitted through homosexual intercourse than heterosexual intercourse. According to the International Journal of Epidemiology, the risk of HIV transmission is 18% higher through anal sex than vaginal sex. In responding to the contrast issue between the needs of legalization of LGBT for particular parties and those who oppose the activity, Jaringan Gaya Warna Lentera Indonesia (GWL-INA) was established. GWL-INA is a network that consists of 68 community- based and non-governmental organizations from 25 provinces which have high concern for HIV- related issues, healthcare, and the rights of the LGBT community in Indonesia. This network was established on February 4, 2017 in Surabaya. Their mandate is to be the communication and coordination center in the program managements of HIV and also to strengthen the advocacy regarding the compliance of sexual health, rights, reproduction, and any Primarily, the network only consisted of an e-group composed of four key people: Dede Oetomo, Tono Permana Muhammad, Sigit, and Puji. Eventually, GWL- INA has also partnered with HIV Cooperation Program for Indonesia (HCPI AusAID), Family Health International (FHI USAID), Burnett Indonesia, Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAO), National Alliance Council (NAC), and UNAIDS Country Office in Indonesia. These partnerships have provided funding and the technical assistance needed for the development of the network. In Indonesia, the existence of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered (LGBT) people have not been recognized. The views on LGBT people is widely influenced by the majority of Muslims in the country who do not support the activities of this community. Moreover, human rights which is mentioned in the Constitution of 1945 is not liberal but rather human rights which adhere to and respect law and All activities in this network have been organized by the National Secretariat of GWL-INA in Jakarta. For the past six years, GWL-INA has been focusing on building the internal capacity of the network. The implementation includes the training programs for members of the network’s mailing list. Those who have interest in participating in the network should submit an abstract and the national secretariat checks the submissions. The network aims to provide equal opportunities for different individuals to build their capacities. Since the main focus of GWL-INA is to address the HIV program implementation for LGBT people, the network developed the national strategy and action plan which also cope the 2010-2014 AIDS National Strategy and Action Plan and provides clear guidance for policy makers and stakeholders in developing plus implementing HIV and AIDS response program for the LGBT community. Change Magazine January 2018 41