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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 01 Hansard (Thursday, 3 December 2020) . . Page.. 187 ..


role in making places more difficult and less appealing for criminal activity. We will continue to work closely with ACT Policing to raise awareness and empower the community to safeguard their property. The minister has tabled the Property Crime Prevention Strategy 2016-2020 and I am pleased to provide this information to the Assembly today to give a snapshot of the report.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Adjournment

Motion (by Mr Gentleman) proposed:

That the Assembly do now adjourn.

World AIDS Day

MR DAVIS (Brindabella) (3.56): I rise today to mark World AIDS Day, which took place on Tuesday. World AIDS Day is held on 1 December each year to raise awareness of the issues and experiences faced by people living with HIV and to commemorate those that we have lost to AIDS. This year’s theme is “Now more than ever”. This theme was chosen to encourage sustained community education, the promotion of prevention strategies and to continue to fight against stigma and discrimination.

Ending HIV is an ongoing project, and HIV continues to impact the lives of hundreds of Canberrans, their family, their friends and their allies. Locally, rates of transmission of HIV in our community continue to fall steadily, thanks in large part to the hard work and dedication of Meridian, known formerly as the AIDS Action Council of the ACT. The AIDS Action Council was formed by a group of gay men and their allies who came together in Canberra in 1983 to organise a community response to HIV.

The council worked closely with affected communities on specific projects established for gay men, injecting drug users, sex workers and people with haemophilia. Now known as Meridian, the council changed their name this year to continue to reflect their increasing care and support for a wide range of communities, including LGBTQIA+ people. This name pays homage to Canberra’s first and only social organisation for LGBTQIA+ communities, the Meridian Club.

I was privileged to attend Meridian’s World AIDS Day event on Sunday morning at their space at Havelock House and to have visited the AIDS Garden of Memorial at the National Arboretum. This year Meridian provided 1,500 safe-sex packs and over 1,760 clean syringe packs. They have conducted over 139 community-based sexual health tests and have provided over 1,000 occasions of service to people living with HIV within our Canberra community. This is a considerable achievement, given the impact of COVID-19 on community organisations and particularly those working with people with chronic health conditions such as HIV.


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