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A Benefit for the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network

Sunday, December 1, 2013 — 7:00 p.m.
World AIDS Day

Bram and Bluma Appel Salon, Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge Street

Please join us to celebrate the work of the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network and to honour the winners of the 2013 Awards for Action on HIV/AIDS and Human Rights.

Canadian Recipient: Grandmothers Advocacy Network
International Recipient: Alternatives-Cameroun
Keynote Speaker: Svend Robinson

Check out photos from last year's event:


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Awards for Action on HIV/AIDS and Human Rights

The Awards for Action on HIV/AIDS and Human Rights were established in 2002 by the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network and Human Rights Watch.

The Awards highlight outstanding contributions that decrease vulnerability to HIV/AIDS and protect the rights and dignity of those infected and affected.

Recognizing excellence and long-term commitment to work having a direct impact on HIV/AIDS and human rights issues — in particular work that is of direct relevance to marginalized individuals and communities — an award is presented annually to one Canadian and one international recipient.

Learn more:


GRAN is composed of volunteer grandmothers and grand-others from across Canada. Launched to put a human face on the complex global issue of HIV/AIDS, GRAN’s mission is to advocate in meaningful and strategic ways for the grandmothers of Africa and the children in their care orphaned by AIDS. GRAN’s members talk to MPs, conduct surveys and circulate petitions, write letters and postcards, attend relevant parliamentary committee hearings, hold rallies and sometimes protests in the streets. Their goal is to ensure Canadian and international support for AIDS prevention, care, treatment and support in Sub-Saharan Africa, and that policies, programs and resources improve the conditions of life for African communities, grandmothers and AIDS orphans.

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Alternatives-Cameroun is an organization working for equality, tolerance, and respect for people who suffer from social exclusion. Alternatives-Cameroun was founded by young Cameroonian professionals fighting for human rights in Cameroon, especially for the rights of people who have same-sex relations. Founded in 2006, Alternatives-Cameroon envisions a Cameroonian society that is principled and strong, democratic and tolerant, and that affirms individual as well as social and economic rights. Their mission includes the fight for the respect of human rights — especially the right to access to medical services, information and education — for sexual minorities who are too often vulnerable to discrimination. In addition to fighting for LGBT rights, Alternatives-Cameroun provides essential prevention and treatment services to those living with and affected by HIV.

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Svend Robinson was elected to the House of Commons in Canada for seven consecutive elections, from 1979 to 2004. When he chose not to run again in the June 2004 election, he was one of the longest-serving members in the House of Commons. Svend was an active MP — in his riding, across the country and internationally. A strong advocate of human rights, he served on many Parliamentary Committees including the historic Special Joint Committee on the Constitution in 1980–81, the 1985 Special Committee on Equality Rights, the Human Rights Committee, and the Foreign Affairs Committee. Svend was also a founding member of the Parliamentary Sub-Committee on International Human Rights and Democratic Development. He was the first openly gay MP, having come out publicly in the spring of 1988, and has received many honours nationally and internationally for his work for LGBT rights. In 2001 he was elected as Rapporteur of the Parliamentary Assembly Committee on Human Rights and Democracy for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, and in 2002, he was elected Vice-Chair. Svend received the Commemorative Medal for the 125th Anniversary of Confederation in 1992 and the Commemorative Medal for the Golden Jubilee of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in 2002. Now based in Geneva, Switzerland, Svend coordinates parliamentary relations for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. Svend’s biography, Svend Robinson: A Life in Politics, will be released in October 2013.

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The Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network is a non-governmental organization in Special Consultative Status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
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