Access To Life / Russia Magnum Photographer – Alex Majoli After the fall of the Soviet Union, a wave of drug use swept over Russia, addicting hundreds of thousands of young people. With heroin injection came the spread of HIV, rapidly infecting more than 1 million Russians. Russia’s is among the world’s most rapidly expanding AIDS epidemics, and frequently, those infected are diagnosed too late to be saved. accesstolife.theglobalfund.org accesstolife.theglobalfund.org www.magnumphotos.com
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Video Rating: 3 / 5
Watch the full film here: www.youtube.com For downloads and more information, visit: www.journeyman.tv Russia has the fastest growing HIV infection rate in the world. An epidemic that, ten years ago, could have been relatively easily contained, is now threatening to engulf the country. But how has the crisis reached such alarming proportions? Sex, Needles and Roubles takes us on a journey to the cold winter nights of St. Petersburg, where we meet some of its young drug-addicted prostitutes. Through poignant real-life stories and interviews with corrupt policemen-pimps and discriminating doctors, the scale of Russia’s problem slowly shifts into focus. “Come in girls — movies! Free movies!” jokes a beautiful young women, ushering her friends into the back of a car. A sense of camaraderie fills the air as they joke with the driver and sing him love songs. “Smile Sasha, O, mi amore!” But these are no ordinary women on their way out for a night on the town. They’re prostitutes, arrested in a mass round up and on their way to the police station to pay officers their daily bribes. “If we don’t give them their money, then we’ve had it!” giggles one in mock apprehension. For most Russians, the fall of Communism has come at a heavy price. Tight social controls have vanished, giving way to a pleasure seeking economy, burgeoning prostitution and corruption. Unemployment is rife and access to healthcare and social services limited. “St Petersburg saw an upsurge in prostitution around …
Video Rating: 4 / 5
August 2010 Strong scientific findings were presented at this year’s AIDS conference. Yet tackling the social stigma seems to have taken a back seat. Will sufferers of the ‘spectre of the 80s’ ever escape the taboo? “If you have cancer, people feel pity. If you have HIV then you’re judged negatively”, explains care worker Stella Maris. The treatment of HIV may have moved on, but it is still widely associated with such taboos as prostitution and drug use. HIV sufferer Wiltrut Stefanek is open about her condition, founding the group ‘PulsHIV’ in order to give talks to the public about the disease. She is quick to dispel prejudices: “The doctor said, ‘so, you’ve had quite a few partners?’ I said, ‘no, I just married the wrong man’”. The audience seem receptive to Wiltrut’s candour. Yet tackling the isolation of those infected is still a battle against a social epidemic.
Video Rating: 5 / 5
March 2006 More than twenty years after the discovery of the AIDS virus, the disease continues to decimate communities right across Africa. But how is it that despite great advances in the prevention and treatment of the disease, communities like Ndeda Island on Lake Victoria can see their population decline from 6000 in 1997 to a little over 2000 today? One of the reasons is a cultural and business practice employed by the fishing communities around the lake known as the Jaboya system. Women almost universally run the business side of Africa’s biggest inland fishing industry, but competition is fierce between these women. Everything rests on the catch and whoever manages to get their hands on it. Simply put, women who offer sexual favours to the fishermen stand a better chance of getting fish to sell in the markets than those who don’t. This creates an exploitative process of procurement that has played straight into the hands of the virus.
Video Rating: 4 / 5