The UNAIDS Reference Group on HIV and Human Rights was established in 2002 to advise the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) on all matters relating to HIV and human rights.
It was initiated by the UNAIDS Secretariat, in collaboration with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), which serves as a permanent observer.
The principal objectives of the Reference Group for the period 2011-2015 are:
- To provide UNAIDS with ongoing and practical advice on the implementation of the human rights elements of all three strategic directions in the UNAIDS 2011-2015 Strategy
- To highlight and catalyze action by UNAIDS on pressing and neglected issues that are not adequately addressed in its Strategy
- To keep UNAIDS abreast of emerging human rights developments at the local, national and international level that affects its work and the response to HIV
Related activities that will be pursued in the fulfillment of the above objectives are:
- To participate in the development of and/or review of UNAIDS policy, strategy and advocacy documents
- To speak and act publicly in an independent capacity in a way which may not reflect the views of UNAIDS, after having informed the UNAIDS Secretariat and UNDP beforehand that it intends to do so and having engaged in dialogue with the UNAIDS Secretariat and UNDP on the relevant issues.