National Human Rights Plan launched as scores march in Durban
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National Human Rights Plan launched as scores march in Durban

Civil society groups in KwaZulu-Natal have welcomed the launch of the National Human Rights plan - which is aimed at protecting people living with HIV, TB and other infectious diseases.  

Durban march ahead of aids conference
Sandile Zikhali

But they want more to be done to help families. 

The Health Minister launched the plan yesterday, after a march by more than a thousand rights groups in the Durban CBD.   

Activist, Oziel Mdletshe says there isn't enough support for couples.

"We are not talking to couples affected and infected by HIV in this country. It means the infection will escalate in our communities. The disclosure and acceptance of people living with HIV within their intimacy is still going to be an issue," Mdletshe said. 

Yesterday saw the start of the 9th AIDS Conference.   

Debbie Mathew from the AIDS Foundation of SA says most people are also battling with internal stigma. 

"Other challenges are that there still is a lot self stigma - where people themselves are battling to come to terms with their status. That is one of the main reasons people are not necessarily getting tested for HIV. They rather not know," Mathew said. 

NOW READ: Aids Health Foundation explains high HIV stats in KZN

Meanwhile children's rights activist, Chalone Savant says the plan will also help children living with HIV. 

"The children of South Africa are a very vulnerable population. They can't speak for themselves. They're in school - or not thinking about them," Savant said. 

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