Fight AIDS, Not PWAs   Fight AIDS –
Not People With AIDS!

www.AIDSstigma.net

 
  AIDS-related stigma (or, more simply, AIDS stigma) refers to prejudice, discounting, discrediting, and discrimination directed at people perceived to have AIDS or HIV, and the individuals, groups, and communities with which they are associated.
 
  AIDS stigma is expressed around the world in a variety of ways, including:
  • ostracism, rejection, and avoidance of people with AIDS (PWAs)
  • discrimination against PWAs
  • compulsory HIV testing without prior consent or protection of confidentiality
  • violence against persons who are perceived to have AIDS or to be infected with HIV
  • quarantine of persons with HIV.

AIDS stigma is effectively universal, but its form varies from one country to another, and the specific groups targeted for AIDS stigma vary considerably.

Whatever its form, AIDS stigma inflicts suffering on people and interferes with attempts to fight the AIDS epidemic. Indeed, a 1988 Institute of Medicine panel observed that "the fear of discrimination is a major constraint to the wide acceptance of many potentially effective public health measures" in the United States.
 

Stigma, Social Risk, and Health Policy: Public Attitudes Toward HIV Surveillance Policies and the Social Construction of Illness. A detailed report on findings from the study that was published in the September 2003 issue of Health Psychology.
 
HIV-Related Stigma and Knowledge in the United States: Prevalence and Trends, 1991-1999. Detailed information about findings from the study that was published in the March 2002 issue of the American Journal of Public Health.
 
  Click to download PDF file Download the AIDS stigma items from Dr. Herek's 1999 national survey. (Requires Adobe Acrobat reader, which can be downloaded free of charge).
 
  The AIDS stigma items from Dr. Herek's 1991 national survey (first reported in the American Journal of Public Health in 1993) are also available.
 
  Click to download PDF file Download AIDS and Stigma: A Conceptual Framework and Research Agenda, the final report from a research workshop on AIDS and stigma, sponsored by the National Institute of Mental Health. (Requires Adobe Acrobat reader, which can be downloaded free of charge).
 
  Click to download PDF file Download AIDS stigma and sexual prejudice, a preprint of a paper published in the American Behavioral Scientist (1999, volume 42, #7). An analysis of national survey data revealed that: (1) most American adults still associate AIDS mainly with homosexuality or bisexuality, and this association is correlated with higher levels of sexual prejudice (antigay attitudes); (2) all people who contract AIDS sexually are assigned blame for their infection, but such blame is greater for a gay or bisexual man than for a heterosexual man or woman; (3) a sizable minority of the public equates all male-male sexual behavior with AIDS, even sex between two uninfected men; and (4) misconceptions about HIV transmission are correlated with sexual prejudice.
(Requires Adobe Acrobat reader, which can be downloaded free of charge).
 
  Selected abstracts of Dr. Herek's papers on AIDS stigma.
 
 
AIDS Education Click to download PDF file Download a pre-publication copy of AIDS educational videos for gay and bisexual men: A content analysis. (Requires Adobe Acrobat reader, which can be downloaded free of charge).
 
  Cultural Sensitivity in AIDS Videos for African American Audiences, a study by Dr. Herek and his colleagues that addresses the importance of using culturally sensitive educational materials in HIV-related interventions with racial and ethnic minority groups.
 
  Click to download PDF file Download a pre-publication copy of Culturally Sensitive AIDS Educational Videos for African American Audiences. (Requires Adobe Acrobat reader, which can be downloaded free of charge).
 
 
Resources From
Other Sites
HIV-Related Knowledge and Stigma - United States, 2000. From the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, December 1, 2000. Using some of the same items that Dr. Herek developed for his national surveys, the researchers found that an alarmingly high number of Americans hold inaccurate beliefs about how HIV is transmitted and many stigmatize people with AIDS.
 
Stigma and Global Health: Developing a Research Agenda. Materials from an international conference held in September, 2001, sponsored by the Fogarty International Center and branches of NIH, including the National Institute of Mental Health. The site includes downloadable versions of some of the main conference papers.
 
Public opinion surveys on HIV/AIDS. From the Kaiser Family Foundation.
 
Click to download PDF file Interventions to Reduce HIV/AIDS Stigma: What Have We Learned? A 2001 review of research by Lisanne Brown, Lea Trujillo, and Kate Macintyre of Tulane University.
(Requires Adobe Acrobat reader, version 5, which can be downloaded free of charge).
 
Horizons AIDSQuest: The HIV/AIDS Survey Library. A collection of survey items about AIDS for researchers and others developing HIV/AIDS-related data collection tools. Includes methodological tips on designing AIDS-related questions.
 
Publications on HIV and AIDS-related discrimination, stigmatization and denial. From the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS).
 
  Other internet sources for information about HIV/AIDS.

 

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All original content of this website is copyright © 1997-2012 by Gregory M. Herek, Ph.D.
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