Delivered by Jumoke Patrick, Latin America and the Caribbean, on behalf of the NGO Delegation
Thank you, Chair. I am speaking on behalf of the NGO Delegation.UNAIDS is in its 25th year as a committed and strong global advocacy movement that puts people first, that puts people at the centre of its operation and people first to carry out its mandate as a progressive global change agent. For this reason, I am disheartened to hear another Staff Association report where there remains a troubling low level of trust between staff and senior leadership. Without a doubt as a delegation, we understand that currently, UNAIDS sits on uneasy ground with a global pandemic, humanitarian crisis, budget cuts and an alignment process occurring at the same time which is all causing destabilisation and uncertainty. Yes, we are in difficult times and such a time calls for leadership and transformation that will come at a cost for many, but never should it be at a cost to the people driving the response and the people central to the effectiveness of the responseWe have noted and seen improvement within UNAIDS in the engagement and frequency of which staff are engaged in different processes and congratulate the senior leadership for recognizing that communication is key to the process and that the fit for purpose and realignment process being undertaken won’t be successful if engagement and communication processes are not embedded in the practices and procedures moving forward with the staff of UNAIDSWe have a perfect opportunity NOW to collaborate better to make UNAIDS the change agent for the people we serve. This process is bigger than the Senior Leadership and the leadership of the staff association. This moment and this entire joint programme are for the People who continue to live in danger, the people who continue to be criminalised, the people who continue to have unequal access to treatment AND those who are yet to even see the benefit of a UNAIDS in their country. Looking ahead, we hope that the staff association and the UNAIDS management can find common grounds and better transparent engagements. The hard work of the staff is very much noted and has impacted many and we acknowledge both (Management and Staff) have the good of UNAIDS at heart, to improve staff morale and confidence, to address injustices & inequalities, conflicts and to show US the people living with and impacted by HIV that together they can make powerful moves in the HIV response and as we implement a progressive Global AIDS Strategy.
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