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Stigma against HIV+ children more in State

Special Correspondent


61 children removed from schools across India after they were found to be HIV positive

More children thrown out of schools in Andhra Pradesh than in any other State: report


HYDERABAD: Andhra Pradesh has the dubious distinction of topping the list of incidents of stigma and discrimination against children living with HIV by educational institutions. This was stated in a report on “ Vulnerable Children and Right to Education” which was released here on Wednesday by MLC Nageshwar Rao. According to the Central Government, more children were thrown out of schools in Andhra Pradesh than any other state. Over the last three years, 27 children in the State have been asked to leave the schools because of their HIV status.

It was found that 61 children have been expelled or removed from schools across India in the last three years after they were found to be HIV positive. Andhra Pradesh was followed by West Bengal (13), Haryana(9), Gujarat and Kerala ( four each), Uttar Pradesh (3) and Maharashtra (1).

Addressing the media, Dr. Rao urged the Government to immediately establish State Commission for Protection of Children's Rights (SCPCR) on the lines of the National Commission. He said there was a need for single window mechanism to address instances of stigma and discrimination against vulnerable children at educational institutions. Uma Sudhir, Convenor, AP Media Forum on HIV/IDS urged the media to play more active role in arresting the menace of stigma and discrimination at educational institutions. The report is based on a recent consultation on RTE of Vulnerable children, organised by AP Media Forum on HIV/AIDS in collaboration with AP State AIDS Control Society, AP Legislators' Forum on HIV/AIDS and other NGOs.

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