Key population and community leadership


Peo­ple liv­ing with HIV should be placed at the cen­ter of HIV responses, rep­re­sented in deci­sion mak­ing bod­ies, and influ­ence deci­sions that affect their lives. Peo­ple liv­ing with HIV should also have access to tech­ni­cal sup­port for com­mu­nity mobi­liza­tion, strength­ened orga­ni­za­tional capac­i­ties, and lead­er­ship devel­op­ment. Com­mu­nity lead­er­ship refers to the fact that com­mu­ni­ties should be placed at the cen­ter of responses and exer­cise this type of lead­er­ship. Key pop­u­la­tions for instance must play a sig­nif­i­cant role in design­ing, imple­ment­ing and eval­u­at­ing HIV ser­vices which in turn pro­vides the oppor­tu­nity to make HIV ser­vices more peo­ple-cen­tered. It fur­ther encour­ages co-cre­ation of inno­v­a­tive HIV ser­vices tai­lored towards address­ing the needs of Key Pop­u­la­tions. Cau­tion should be made to avoid tokenis­tic involve­ment of key pop­u­la­tions in HIV ser­vice deliv­ery as this dimin­ishes authen­tic key pop­u­la­tion - led ser­vices deliv­ery.

With or with­out offi­cial recog­ni­tion, com­mu­ni­ties have often led their own responses to counter neglect, dis­crim­i­na­tion and crim­i­nal­i­sa­tion with mutual aid strate­gies of com­mu­nity pre­ven­tion, treat­ment and care in sub­sti­tu­tion for denied or inad­e­quate health sec­tor pro­vided ser­vices as well as through advo­cacy and orga­nized resis­tance against the laws, poli­cies and prac­tices which abridge their sex­ual and repro­duc­tive rights. Com­mu­nity lead­er­ship has always been and will always remain indis­pens­able to effec­tive responses to HIV, related and sex­ual and repro­duc­tive health chal­lenges, and the drive towards uni­ver­sal health cov­er­age.

Sev­eral inter­na­tional agree­ments rec­og­niz­ing the need to place com­mu­ni­ties at the cen­ter of HIV responses already exists and are reflected in the Lan­guage Com­pendium.


2023 Resolution on community-based primary health care: a participatory and inclusive approach to universal health coverage

2022 Resolution on Violence Against Women Migrant Workers

2021 Global AIDS Strategy 2021-2026

2021 Resolution on ensuring equitable, affordable, timely and universal access for all countries to vaccines in response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic

2021 CSW Report on women and HIV/AIDS

2021 Political declaration on HIV and AIDS

2020 Resolution on comprehensive and coordinated response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic

2020 Resolution on global health and foreign policy: strengthening health system resilience through affordable health care for all

2020 Resolution on consolidating gains and accelerating efforts to control and eliminate malaria in developing countries, particularly in Africa, by 2030

2020 Resolution on violence against women migrant workers

2019 Political declaration of the HLM on UHC

2018 Political declaration of the HLM on the fight against TB

2018 Political declaration of the third HLM on NCDs

2016 HRC Resolution on civil society space

2016 Outcome Document of the Session on the World Drug Problem

2016 Resolution on Women, the Girl Child and HIV and AIDS

2016 Political Declaration on HIV and AIDS

2016 Resolution on the girl child

2012 Resolution on women in development

2011 Political Declaration on HIV and AIDS

2010 HRC On the rights of the child: the fight against sexual violence

2010 HRC Resolution on the elimination of discrimination against women

2009 ECOSOC Resolution on UNAIDS

2001 Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS

1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action

Expert precedents

2022 OHCHR Annual Report on Human Rights and HIV/AIDS

2022 Report of the Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health

2011 Report of the Special Rapporteur on the right to health

2009 Report of the Special Rapporteur on the right to health


2022 WHO Consolidated Guidelines on HIV, Viral Hepatitis and STI Prevention, Diagnosis, Treatment and Care for Key Populations

2022 WHO Guidance on Differentiated and Simplified PrEP for HIV Prevention

2021 WHO Consolidated Guidelines on HIV Prevention, Testing, Treatment, Service Delivery and Monitoring