ABIA (the Brazilian Interdisciplinary AIDS Association in English) is on alert after the former Department of STI, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis in the Brazilian Ministry of Health officially announced the deactivation of their social networking platforms. Following a change in department structure and the removal of “AIDS” from the sector name, this is the most recent move by the Bolsonaro government at dismantling AIDS policy in Brazil.
HIV/AIDS social networks act as important communication channels for HIV/AIDSinformation andaction, and deactivating these networks serves as another profound setback in relation to Brazil’s HIV and AIDS programs.With younger populations being one of the main users of social media, the dismantling of these social networks will inflict the greatest damage upon a young and vulnerable population. It has been recorded that young gay people have been one of the groups most affected by the upsurge in the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the country.
ABIA strongly rejectsthe ongoing plan to merge the various sites with services and informationfrom different municipalities, foundations, and departments. Established by Decree No. 9,756 / 2019, signed in April by President Jair Bolsonaro, this plan creates one single government platform that jeopardizes access to data with transparency and access to rights by the population – especially for people living with HIV.
ABIA joins the other voices that are outraged by the current Brazilian government’s initiative to gain maximum control over the production of information.
Rio de Janeiro, July 25, 2019
Brazilian Interdisciplinary AIDS Association