Fighting Stigma with Every Bite

From GayNZ Team, 2 February 2019

'Cafe+' a pop-up café will be set up at the Big Gay Out to help fight HIV related stigma and discrimination. People living with and affected by HIV will be preparing and serving food at the café to challenge misconceptions.

Staff from NZAF and Positive Women Inc in the uniforms for the day. Photo: Supplied

It is an important issue to address as a recent Colmar Brunton Survey poll suggests 42% of New Zealanders fear eating food prepared by someone who has HIV. There is however no risk of HIV being spread from sharing or preparing food.

This will be the first cafe of its kind in New Zealand. The concept originated in Canada in 2017 because of similar statistics and has been brought here by three local organisations - Body Positive, Positive Women Inc. and the New Zealand AIDS Foundation.

Mark Fisher, Executive Director of Body Positive said We chose the Big Gay Out event as it is the largest gay fair in New Zealand and this is our opportunity to educate and challenge this myth by engaging with the general public. We hope it will be the first of many".

Jane Bruning, National Coordinator of Positive Women Inc said "Stigma and discrimination are still the biggest barriers for people living with HIV. The Colmar Brunton Poll highlights this. Come and join us at Café + to break bread and smash stigma!"

Café+ at the Big Gay Out

Location: Coyle Park, Point Chevalier, Auckland

When: Sunday 10th February, 2019

Time: Noon – 7pm