Zero Discrimination Day
to be celebrated
1 March 2014
GENEVA, 27 February 2014- UNAIDS Executive Director Michel
Sidibé launched the Zero Discrimination Day on 27
February with a major event in Beijing, China supported by the China Red Ribbon Foundation, Hanergy Holding Group, Chinese government,
civil society and celebrities. Similar events are planned for the days leading up to 1 March 2014 in countries around the world.
Zero Discrimination Day is a call to people everywhere to promote and celebrate everyone's right to live a full life with
dignity-no matter what they look like, where they come from or whom they love. The symbol for Zero Discrimination is
the butterfly, widely recognized as a sign of transformation.
At the Zero Discrimination Day event in Beijing, Li Hejun, Chairman and CEO of Hanergy Holding Group; Gu Yanfen, General
Secretary of the China Red Ribbon Foundation; and Mr Sidibé delivered opening remarks. James Chau, news anchor for the China Central
Television and UNAIDS National Goodwill Ambassador, moderated a panel discussion on discrimination. The event ended with more
than 30 business leaders signing a pledge to eliminate discrimination in the workplace.
"The AIDS response itself has taught the world tremendous lessons in tolerance and compassion," Mr Sidibé said. "We know
that both the right to health and the right to dignity belong to everyone. Working together, we can transform ourselves, our
communities and our world to reach zero discrimination."
Working with Nobel Peace Prize winner and UNAIDS Global Advocate for Zero Discrimination Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, UNAIDS
launched the #zerodiscrimination campaign in December 2013 on World AIDS Day.
"People who discriminate narrow the world of others as well as their own," said Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. "I believe in a
world where everyone can flower and blossom."
Many international celebrities have joined the call for zero discrimination, recording video messages
and taking photographs with the butterfly sign . The
personalities include UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador Annie Lennox, international football star David Luiz, actress and activist
Michelle Yeoh and HSH Princess Stephanie of Monaco.
"Hanergy recognizes the right of all employees to live a life of dignity, free from discrimination," said Mr Li. "With the
support of UNAIDS, Hanergy has worked to expand staff training on HIV and discrimination for all employees, and has integrated
anti-discrimination content into company recruitment policies."
The private sector is also playing an important part in commemorating Zero Discrimination Day in South Africa, where as
part of a longstanding partnership with UNAIDS, the Standard Bank is conducting a social media drive around the day. The almost 3.5
million subscribers of Airtel, the largest mobile telephone service provider in Malawi will receive a message promoting zero
discrimination on 1 March. In Myanmar, two major football teams in collaboration with the Myanmar National Football League
and Federation will make a pledge supporting zero discrimination during a match at the national football stadium in
Yangon. In Minsk, Belarus, an interactive dialogue on promoting zero discrimination in the region will take
place with young people; participants will include pop singer Teo. A similar event organized by people
living with HIV as well as lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people will take place in a
central park in the city of San Pedro Sula, Honduras.
More information is available at:
The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) leads and inspires the world to achieve its shared vision of zero new HIV
infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths. UNAIDS unites the efforts of 11 UN organizations-UNHCR, UNICEF,
WFP, UNDP, UNFPA, UNODC, UN Women, ILO, UNESCO, WHO and the World Bank-and works closely with global and national partners
to maximize results for the AIDS response. Learn more at unaids.org and
connect with us on Facebook and Twitter .
UNAIDS Geneva | Sa ya Oka | tel. +41 22 791 1552 | okas@ unaids.org
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