Mr. Glenroy Blanchette MD Democrat Newsaper
Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
December 07, 2009 (PAM Secretariat)
Journalist and Managing Director of the Democrat Newspaper Glenroy Blanchette is appealing to media colleges to commit more in playing a very significant role in addressing stigma and discrimination of people living with HIV AIDS.
Blanchette said that while there are a number of challenges regarding HIV/AIDS in St. Kitts and Nevis, he sees success being achieved once there is increased and significant support from the media, noting that the media are pivotal to the success. He said that the media’s role could threaten the success of true HIV prevention, treatment and care efforts globally. He also urged the local media to not only be more committed but aggressive in ensuring people living with HIVAIDS could have their cause championed.
The Democrat’s Managing Director said that his media house, along the People’s Action Movement, remains very committed to supporting initiatives that seeks to curb the spread of HIV and AIDS in the Federation. Blanchette said that there could not be any real success without the full involvement of the media.
“The media hold the key to the success of eradicating stigma and discrimination. The media play a critically important role in the daily lives of everyone. Therefore, it’s important that every media practitioner gets intimately involved in working along with the relevant stakeholders in addressing HIV/AIDS,” he said.
Blanchette said that a look at the Ministry of Health’s approach in confronting the issues of HIV/AIDS would prove that there are some lingering challenges which need to be addressed immediately. He spoke of the importance for all to work together in being able to confront the difficulties and challenges, stating that success requires the committed efforts of all sectors.
He urged the Ministry of Health to immediately design effective strategies and programmes so as to ensure success, calling for involvement from international partners, civil society and non-governmental organizations. According to recent disclosures made by the World Health Organization (WHO), it was estimated that more than four million people in low and middle-income nations currently have access to anti-retroviral treatment.
Blanchette also commended the various stakeholders for their continued efforts in addressing stigma and discrimination. “I am pleased and impress with the numerous and significant work that is being done by various stakeholders, including NGOs, the churches and other agencies, in addressing this continued problem. We must remain committed and dedicated to the fight as there will certainly be success with the right investment,” he reiterated.
Blanchette, who is also his party’s Constituency One representative and Shadow Minister for Health, said that his media house and his party are unwavering in their commitment and support to helping in eradicating stigma and discrimination. He reiterated his call for every media practitioners to commit towards helping in reducing sigma and discrimination, adding that the time is here for all to play their part in whatever way they could.