Poster highlighting Red Cross programmes providing care to families affected by HIV and AIDS

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‘Without prejudice’ is a poster created by the British Red Cross for use in their shops or branches to convey to the general population what they are doing to help the fight against HIV and AIDS. The poster is of a Red Cross volunteer cradling a child orphaned by AIDS in Africa; both individuals have broad smiles on their faces. The poster then goes on to highlight how the programmes put in place by the Red Cross to provide care in the home to thousands of families affected by HIV/AIDS. It also states how encouraging people to help impartially is one of the Red Cross’ top priorities. The poster was produced in 2006, two and a half decades since the first recognised case of HIV/AIDS was identified. This would have been a time where the knowledge surrounding HIV and AIDS prevention had grown rapidly.

The British Red Cross pride themselves on helping people in crisis - whoever and wherever they are, which was no different to how they responded to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. They help communities tackle health and social crises all around the world and one of their biggest focuses is HIV/AIDS, particularly in developing regions such as Africa. By 2006 HIV/AIDS was no longer considered a death sentence, and although there currently remains no cure for the syndrome, a huge emphasis has been placed on preventative measures. So for the Red Cross, education became the most effective tool to defeat HIV/AIDS.

I was drawn to this poster as it is in stark contrast to the AIDS campaign that would have been witnessed in the late eighties when the virus was first recognised, where the associated images were based on the ‘AIDS: Don’t Die Of Ignorance’ 1987 tombstone campaign. Both the volunteer and orphan on this poster seem joyful as they are laughing and appear to be carefree - highlighting the normalisation of the disease and showing that there is life after diagnosis.

Audio recording by Bethan Crowden (Volunteer), Cardiff.
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Poster is produced for general use in shops or branches featuring new brand
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