Stephen Williams MP - working hard for Bristol West

Stephen Williams MP marks World AIDS Day by pledging to put pressure on Blair

1.01.47pm GMT Fri 2nd Dec 2005

Stephen Williams MP meets Oxfam workers on World AIDS Day

Stephen Williams, MP for Bristol West, marked World AIDS Day by pledging to hold Tony Blair and the G8 to their promise to ensure that all AIDS sufferers across the world are receiving the necessary drugs by 2010.

Stephen Williams met with campaigners from the Stop AIDS Campaign - a multi-organisation campaign to encourage the world's richest nations to ensure supply of the antiretroviral drugs required by the 40 million people who currently have the disease.

Stephen said "While prevention is always better than cure when it comes to AIDS, we cannot ignore the fact that many people are currently dying unnecessarily because they are not receiving the treatment they need. This is having a devastating effect on many African countries where a whole generation of breadwinners and carers are being wiped out - leaving the very old and the very young to struggle on alone.

"To keep these people alive and leading relatively normal lives we need to tackle the issues of why these drugs are not getting to the people who need them. We need to make the drugs more affordable and available by ensuring that countries are not held to ransom by patent holding multinationals. We need to strengthen the health services in developing countries so that the drugs can be effectively distributed. And finally we need to make sure that the cash is available to pay for them. This isn't aid so much as allowing countries to keep a generation of workers alive who can keep their nations afloat."

For more information on the campaign visit

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Next news story: Stephen Williams MP calls on Labour to slash condom tax (Tue 6th Dec 2005).

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