Major media outlets in Latin America have formed a new partnership to increase awareness of HIV/AIDS and reduce stigma, according to PRNewswire.

gmai.jpgIniciativa de Medios Latinoamericanos sobre el SIDA (IMLAS), a.k.a. the Latin American Media AIDS Initiative, is the first media partnership in Latin America on HIV/AIDS. The partnership will coordinate a regional public information campaign, journalism workshops and other skills-building programs.

IMLAS was formed in response to efforts by the Global Media AIDS Initiative, which has launched similar partnerships in Africa, Asia-Pacific, Eastern Europe and the Caribbean.

Founding members of IMLAS include: Canal 13 (Argentina), Ecuavisa (Ecuador), TC Television (Ecuador), Telefe (Argentina), Televisa (Mexico), TV Azteca (Mexico) and TV Globo (Brazil). The initiative plans to expand its membership across Latin America. Fundación Huesped, a non-governmental organization based in Buenos Aires, will provide operational support.

“Although Latin America is the third most impacted region of the world in terms of the number of people living with HIV/AIDS, after Africa and the Caribbean, the epidemic in the region is often invisible,” said Leandro Cahn, director of communication for Fundación Huesped.