January 7, 2021
2020 was, by any measure, a difficult year. A year ago, a pandemic with the magnitude of COVID-19 was, for many, unimaginable. At AVAC, we have sought to respond to all of the events of 2020, from the COVID pandemic to the ongoing fight for racial justice and free and fair elections in so many countries, including the United States. We are proud to work with partners who share and strengthen our commitment to secure long-term gains in HIV, sexual and reproductive health and rights, and equitable access to health with a social justice lens.
In this first week of the New Year, we at AVAC are committing to continue and expand this work. We make this commitment against a backdrop of an escalating pandemic, of inequities in COVID-19 vaccine access, and of continued stress on health systems that are leaving millions around the globe at risk from other health issues. And we make this commitment during a time of division, dishonesty, insurrection and hatred in the United States—all instigated and incited by a delusional president, aided and abetted by people who were meant to be public servants, but who have clearly abdicated their stated commitments to democracy.
The world watched the events of January 6th in Washington, DC, with shock and horror. AVAC’s US-based staff are grateful for the many messages of concern and solidarity from friends and partners around the world. We don’t know what will happen with the US government in the coming days, but are confident that on January 20th, a new administration will take office. And we celebrate the results from two free and fair Georgia Senate races, delivered in the face of manipulation, fear and intimidation.
AVAC looks forward to engaging with the incoming Biden-Harris Administration to ensure more equitable US domestic and global health policies. We will do this as part of our continued work with partners across the globe.
Twenty-five years ago, a group of activists came together to form AVAC in the face of another pandemic and in the certainty that a small group of committed people could call out governments and other institutions for their inadequate and unjust responses. Today we stand on their shoulders and side by side with advocates around the globe calling for health equity, justice and human rights.
As we look to the future, we welcome your thoughts and ideas for our joint work in the year to come.