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An AIDS memorial for Canberra

By johnboy - 20 May 2012 89

Andrew Barr has announced he’s launching the Canberra Permanent AIDS Memorial Project.

This project will provide Canberra with a lasting commemoration to the lives of everyone affected by HIV/AIDS.

I will launch the fundraising drive at the 29th International AIDS Candlelight Memorial, to be held this evening at 6.00pm at the National Gallery of Australia.

Over the next 12 months the AIDS Action Council of the ACT and the broader community aims to raise $30,000 to build and install the Canberra Permanent AIDS Memorial with a view to unveiling it in 2013, which is the 30th anniversary of the Candlelight memorial, 30 years since HIV was first diagnosed in Australia, and the Centenary of Canberra.

Today there are more than 33 million people living with HIV worldwide – and more than 30 million people have died from an AIDS-related illness. More than 21,000 people in Australia are living with diagnosed HIV, and 6819 Australians have died from AIDS-related illnesses.

As a thought exercise are there any other diseases we should be memorialising?


UPDATE 20/05/12 21:26: Andrew Barr has Tweeted his disappointment in some of you:

Also on facebook he had this to say:

It didn’t take long… A profoundly disappointing, ignorant and bigoted response from some…


UPDATE 21/05/12 09:08: And then this:

What’s Your opinion?


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89 Responses to
An AIDS memorial for Canberra
I-filed 9:48 pm 20 May 12

Anna Key said :

Maybe I missed it, but where is it going to be located? And does this mean it already has planning approval?

Telopea Park maybe?

Fliponout 9:46 pm 20 May 12

Some People have nothing better to do than bitch and complain about things…
“They should get a life”
Yes there will be a Garden … Well Done to the Person who used there initiative to come up with a brilliant idea and place that they can go to express their feeling for a love ones, that have been lost to this horrible disease.
I cannot see the ACT Government stoping other community groups who what want to follow the lead doing the same.
This is the National Capital of Australia not a country Town and we should be leading the nation in ideas that help heal not embarking on bitching about people that do…

dungfungus 9:45 pm 20 May 12

goggles13 said :

use some of the money from the failed Immigration Bridge project – they still have my money!!

all kidding aside, I fail to see the point of this, particularly when it excludes other diseases which have had equal affect on humans

Agree; AIDS is only prevalent in a small sector of our society and it is an acquired disease. Asking for money to fund “an in-your-face AIDS memorial” will exclude other groups and individuals whose relatives and loved ones have succumbed to other afflictions that may have been heriditary.
I’ll bet there would be some excitement if Barr chose the site for the proposed memorial as being next to the national memorial to deceased truck drivers at Tarcutta.

Anna Key 9:39 pm 20 May 12

Maybe I missed it, but where is it going to be located? And does this mean it already has planning approval?

dungfungus 9:01 pm 20 May 12

I-filed said :

Um, Aids was first diagnosed in Australia in 1982 actually. Andrew Barr’s little tactic of retrofitting with false dates to fit the Canberra Centenary is quite inappropriate – (er and just what is the benefit to Canberra of the link with the Canberra Centenary?) The “30 years since the first candle-light memorial” is referring to the anniversary of the first candlelight vigil in the US. In Australia it would almost certainly have been much later than 1983. This mix of “Australian dates” and “international dates” is an attempt to hijack the Canberra centenary, is mixing messages, and is a nonsense. Not to mention that Aids existed in Africa before it surfaced in the US – how is that anniversary to be taken into account, if the US anniversary is so important? (especially given that most Aids deaths are in developing countries). So, what are we to expect in 2013? Press releases regarding Centenary festival events throughout 2013 with Aids death statistics as a tagline? Where’s the celebration?
Katie Gallagher needs to nip this in the bud. Unless, of course, it’s a cynical exercise in attracting San Fran tourists to Canberra in 2013 … come to think of it, that would explain the lack of a focus on “developing country” Aids anniversary dates.

There will be a boom in hot tub sales.

I-filed said :

Um, Aids was first diagnosed in Australia in 1982 actually. Andrew Barr’s little tactic of retrofitting with false dates to fit the Canberra Centenary is quite inappropriate – (er and just what is the benefit to Canberra of the link with the Canberra Centenary?) The “30 years since the first candle-light memorial” is referring to the anniversary of the first candlelight vigil in the US. In Australia it would almost certainly have been much later than 1983. This mix of “Australian dates” and “international dates” is an attempt to hijack the Canberra centenary, is mixing messages, and is a nonsense. Not to mention that Aids existed in Africa before it surfaced in the US – how is that anniversary to be taken into account, if the US anniversary is so important? (especially given that most Aids deaths are in developing countries). So, what are we to expect in 2013? Press releases regarding Centenary festival events throughout 2013 with Aids death statistics as a tagline? Where’s the celebration?
Katie Gallagher needs to nip this in the bud. Unless, of course, it’s a cynical exercise in attracting San Fran tourists to Canberra in 2013 … come to think of it, that would explain the lack of a focus on “developing country” Aids anniversary dates.

Nan212 said :

For crying out loud, what next?
How about a memorial to cancer victims, or victims of heart disease, or Parkinsons. Only a member of Canberra’s local government would come up with the idea of an AIDS memorial.

I am sure this proposal has Ms Archer’s full support.

goggles13 9:00 pm 20 May 12

use some of the money from the failed Immigration Bridge project – they still have my money!!

all kidding aside, I fail to see the point of this, particularly when it excludes other diseases which have had equal affect on humans

dungfungus 8:57 pm 20 May 12

“Permanent AIDS ”
He got that part of it right.

airemale 8:55 pm 20 May 12

Whilst some may think this is a waste of money, I applaud it. The money raised is coming from fundraising efforts. If you don’t like it, don’t contribute.
As someone who had lost a number of friends to this disease, I find a number of comments in this thread highly distasteful and ignorant. I doubt a proposed memorial commemorating those who have died from cancer would elicit a similar response.

cranky 8:52 pm 20 May 12

This is so wrong.

You’ve lost touch, old son.

Dracon388 8:51 pm 20 May 12

Any of you ignorant people paying attention to the fact that the government isn’t even paying for any of this, unlike the multimillion dollar street art?

I think it’s a wonderful idea. HIV/AIDS effects people and has such a social sitgma around it, a memorial to remember those lost would be great.

Nan212 8:24 pm 20 May 12

For crying out loud, what next?
How about a memorial to cancer victims, or victims of heart disease, or Parkinsons. Only a member of Canberra’s local government would come up with the idea of an AIDS memorial.

Balthazar 7:15 pm 20 May 12

What a waste of money.

Aren’t memorials suppose to be there to remember something that has happened in the past? Has HIV/AIDS disappeared and we need to remember it?

What a complete waste of human effort….but we know why.

I-filed 6:56 pm 20 May 12

Um, Aids was first diagnosed in Australia in 1982 actually. Andrew Barr’s little tactic of retrofitting with false dates to fit the Canberra Centenary is quite inappropriate – (er and just what is the benefit to Canberra of the link with the Canberra Centenary?) The “30 years since the first candle-light memorial” is referring to the anniversary of the first candlelight vigil in the US. In Australia it would almost certainly have been much later than 1983. This mix of “Australian dates” and “international dates” is an attempt to hijack the Canberra centenary, is mixing messages, and is a nonsense. Not to mention that Aids existed in Africa before it surfaced in the US – how is that anniversary to be taken into account, if the US anniversary is so important? (especially given that most Aids deaths are in developing countries). So, what are we to expect in 2013? Press releases regarding Centenary festival events throughout 2013 with Aids death statistics as a tagline? Where’s the celebration?
Katie Gallagher needs to nip this in the bud. Unless, of course, it’s a cynical exercise in attracting San Fran tourists to Canberra in 2013 … come to think of it, that would explain the lack of a focus on “developing country” Aids anniversary dates.

andym 6:28 pm 20 May 12

Only in Canberra

Special G 5:26 pm 20 May 12

influenza, common cold, small pox, just to name a few. Barr is really focusing on the big issues here.

Not to take away from those who have contracted HIV, that sucks but he can find a better use for his time.

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