PRESS RELEASE: World AIDS Day – Getting to Zero

(FREDERICTON, NB) – The following statement was issued by Green Party Leader and MLA for Fredericton South, David Coon, in recognition of World AIDS Day and Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week.

The theme of World AIDS Day this year is Getting to Zero: zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths.

Not that long ago, those goals would have seemed impossible. When the disease hit our consciousness in the 1980s it was shrouded in misinformation, and the political action needed for change was hampered by apathy and prejudice. It took grassroots efforts around the world, such as those initiated by AIDS New Brunswick, AIDS Moncton, and AIDS Saint John, here in New Brunswick, to overcome those barriers.

“Getting to Zero means no one will lose a friend, a spouse, or a family member to HIV-AIDS ever again. It also means those living with HIV-AIDS will no longer know the pain of being stigmatized. I invite all New Brunswickers to imagine that future with me on December 1st, while holding dear the memory of those we have lost to this disease,” said Green Party Leader David Coon.

Mr. Coon calls on both levels of government to adopt the three goals of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths by supporting the grassroots organizations and public health professionals working in our province and overseas to help make Getting to Zero a reality.