By DR JAGADISH THAKER A communication campaign to reduce stigma and discrimination, increase employment opportunities, and help access health and legal services for community members under the umbrella term “Men-who-have-sex-with-men, Transgender, and Hijra communities” (MTH) was recently launched in Hyderabad, in collaboration with India HIV/AIDS Alliance, Uday Siri Public Welfare Society (Karimnagar, Telangana) and Sneha Bandam Maa Seva Sangam (Ongole, Andhra Pradesh). Our analysis of academic literature in India showed that more research was published on behavioral surveillance among the so-called “MTH” community members, such as transmission rates, sexual behaviors, and condom usage, compared to studies on stigma, discrimination, and its associated health impacts on knowledge and access to health and employment services. Advisory board members – comprising about 5 members in each of the two cities – separately charted the communication objectives and outcomes, as well as the design and implementation of the campaign. Our role, as academic partners, was to listen, build trust, and help build the communication capacity of the community partners. The campaign was launched at the end of March in Hyderabad. Seen below at the poster launch are advisory board members from Karimanagar and Ongole, and other officials during the State Solidarity Event 207 against 377 at Hyderabad. Nitin, our design and campaign implementation partner, provided us with some of the photos and was the one in charge of designing the posters. Our colleague Julio Etchart also contributed some of the photos below.
Poster Launch of the MSM, Transgender and Hijra (MTH) Campaign
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