Multicountry project “Sustainability of services for key populations in the Eastern Europe and Central Asia region” (aka #SoS_project)

The implementation of the three-year project in 14 EECA countries and 25 cities is coordinated by the Alliance for Public Health, in a consortium with the 100% Life (All-Ukrainian Network of PLWH), the Central Asian HIV’ Association and the Eurasian Key Populations Health Network, with the participation of national governmental and non-governmental organizations, regional key populations networks, international agencies and organizations, as well as technical partners. 

EHRA, as a sub-sub-recipient of the project, is implementing activities under objective 1 – to improve the financial sustainability and allocative efficiency of HIV programs, and objective 2 – to alleviate the most important human rights and gender barriers for access to HIV prevention and care service.

  • Objective 1 – to improve the financial sustainability and allocative efficiency of HIV programs: 
  • Activity 1.1. Development of accessible online methodology for analysis of transition plans implementation in EECA with significant involvement of ECOM;
  • Activity 1.2. Conduct analysis of transition plans and their implementation in those project countries, where transition plan is developed, produce annual report and disseminate it among partners and project implementers (regional level).                                                                        
  • Objective 2 – to alleviate the most important human rights and gender barriers for access to HIV prevention and care service:
  • Activity 2.1. Advocate cases of human rights and gender-based violations;
  • Activity 2.2. Community-based data collection of human rights violations and advocacy follow-up to violations.

Summary of the progress for 2019:

  • In September 2019, EHRA submitted the Complaint to the Office of Inspector General of the Global Fund in accordance with the Global Fund Human Rights Complaints Procedure in a response to the inadequate, threatening and discriminatory actions of the Republican Scientific and Practical Center of Medical Technologies, Informatization, Management and Economics of Public Health (Belarus) towards Ms. Parfenyuk.
  • Russia: a legal analysis of human rights violations against women who use drugs in Russia was made on the basis of 26 interviews conducted in St. Petersburg in 2018 with women who use drugs, many of whom are HIV-positive.
  • Moldova: the report on the study “Criminalization of drugs and human rights of people who use drugs in the Republic of Moldova” was developed based on the results of a study of documented and analyzed human rights violations encountered by women and men who had experience serving sentences in imprisonment, including for drug-related crimes. 
  • Kyrgyzstan: analysis of the proportionality of the imposed fines for drug possession in the Kyrgyz Republic was developed based on statistics data and addressing new codes and laws entered into power, which, inter alia, refer to drug-related crimes and increase fines.
  • Ukraine: On the 30th of August, 2019 EHRA together with Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network and Charitable Organization «Charitable Fund «Ukrainian Network of People who Use Drugs» (VOLNA) based on three cases of human rights violations submitted the report to the 127th session of the UN Committee on Civil and Political Rights for the adoption of lists of issues on Ukraine. EHRA submitted report to the UN Committee on Civil and Political Rights for the adoption of lists of issues on Ukraine.
  • Kazakhstan: on September 29, 2019, Kazakhstan Union of People Living with HIV; Public Foundation for Women Living with HIV in Kazakhstan; Public Foundation, ’Answer’; Public Association, ’My Home’; Public Association, ’Amelia’; and the Public Charitable Foundation, ’Shapagat’ with the support from EHRA based on cases of human rights violations submitted Additional information to the Shadow Report of Civil Society Organisations on Discrimination and Violence against Women who use Drugs, Women Living with HIV, Sex Workers and women in prison in Kazakhstan to CEDAW. EHRA and Kazakhstan Union of People Living with HIV representatives presented the report in CEDAW meeting on October 19-23, 2019, in Geneva, Switzerland. 
  •  In 2019 the international consultant hired by EHRA drafted the Concept Note for the Methodological Guide and Outline for monitoring of transition processes in selected EECA countries. Draft framework is largely based on the desk review of existing materials regarding transition and sustainability of the Global Fund supported programs and will serve basis for the development of the Methodology for monitoring of transition processes in EECA. 
Summary of the progress for 2020:
  •  In 2020 the Methodological Guide for Pilot on Monitoring Sustainability of HIV Services in the Context of Transition in Selected EECA countries was developed. 
  •  Due to COVID-19 crisis, flight and public events ban and EU borders closure starting from March 10, the regional workshop for South East Europe countries on documenting cases of human rights violations, initially planned to be conducted in Belgrade, Serbia on March 17-18, was postponed till later date in 2020. 
  • Ukraine: the report on Ukraine to CESCR was submitted by EHRA, Charitable Fund “Ukrainian Network of People who Use Drugs” VOLNA and Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network on January 24, 2020. EHRA and VOLNA representatives presented the report in the CESCR 67 session on Feb 17-21, 2020 in Geneva. In March 2020 CESCR published concluding observations on the results of the session, where the Committee recommended Ukraine Government to consider decriminalizing drug possession for personal consumption. 
  •  Regional statement: considering the emergency situation, provoked by the spread of COVID-19 pandemic and possible influence on the lives and wellbeing of people who use drugs, EHRA jointly with Correlation-European Harm Reduction Network and Drug Reporter Foundation on March 3, 2020 issued the position on the Continuity of Harm Reduction Services During the COVID-19 Crisis. 
  • Russia: on May 4, 2020 the Russian Civil Society Mechanism for Monitoring of Drug Policy Reforms, with technical assistance of the Andrey Rylkov Foundation for Health and Social Justice, Eurasian Harm Reduction Association and the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network submitted a report on Russia for the adoption of List of Issues to the State in relation to the review of the 8th Periodic Report of the Russian Federation during the 129 Session of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.