8th World Congress on Virology
San Antonio, USA
Walter Sisulu University, South Africa
Title: Violence, abuse and discrimination: Key factors militating against control of HIV/AIDS among the LGBTI sector
Biography: Dominic Abaver
The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) South Africans continue to face considerable challenges, including societal stigma, homophobic violence (particularly corrective rape) and high rates of sexually transmitted diseases and infections (particularly HIV/AIDS) even when discrimination based on sexual orientation was outlawed by South African’s post-apartheid constitution. A study was conducted in a tertiary institution in the Eastern Cape of South Africa to ascertain violence, abuse and discrimination against the LGBTI sector as key factors that hinder the smooth implementation of HIV/AIDS program among sexually minority (LGBTI) group. Self-structured questionnaires were used to collect data by simple randomization selection. A total of 3048 participants (1285 male and 1763 female), aged 17-38 years, participated in this study. Though, a small number (987, 32.4%) of the participants witnessed violence against people in same gender relationship, 1557 (51.1%) participants were not aware of violence against the LGBTI sector, while 504 (16.5%) were ignorant of the societal stigma. Participants in this study indicated that the LGBTI sector in this particular tertiary institution face challenges such as abuse which includes physical (681, 22.3%), sexual (561, 18.4%), verbal (603, 19.8%) and emotional abuse (111, 3.6%). About 45.2% (1377) participants witnessed discrimination against the LGBTI sector in this institution, when 34% (1035) participants were not aware of such attitudes towards the sector. However, 20.9% (638) participants did not express their views about discrimination against the LGBTI sector. Social stigma which leads to violence, abuse and discrimination does exist in this institution. Though the knowledge of this societal stigma is in the minority among the students, there is still need to address these issues of violence, abuse and discrimination against LGBTI members in our tertiary institutions to create an enabling environment where people who belong to this sector will come out freely to access programs targeted at the prevention and control of HIV/AIDS.