The Terms of Reference and latest Work Plan for the Positive Women's Network can be downloaded below.
Terms of Reference
The NAPWHA Positive Women’s Network is an advisory group, constituted to provide NAPWHA with an ongoing forum for the discussion of issues for HIV positive women, and to enable collaboration between those involved in the work of policy and advocacy for women living with HIV and AIDS in Australia.
The Women’s Network helps:
- formulate, refine and support NAPWHA’s program of women’s advocacy work conducted through the NAPWHA Secretariat and Board;
- identify new and emerging issues for HIV positive women which require the development of a national policy response;
- provide feedback to the NAPWHA Board and Secretariat on matters specifically concerning HIV positive women as they arise on national HIV or health policy bodies, including ministerial advice structures;
- provide input into NAPWHA’s responses to broader national health policy debate (such as Medicare arrangements, pharmaceuticals or clinical trials), in particular the likely effects of national policy on HIV positive women;
- support and auspice a nationally accessible email list where HIV positive women can exchange information, provide peer support, and discuss issues in a safe environment;
- provide a forum for State issues to be raised at a national level.
The NAPWHA Women’s Network is chaired across the membership and coordinated by the NAPWHA Portfolio Coordinator position within the NAPWHA secretariat.
Positive women are eligible to apply for membership of the Network if they demonstrate that they are:
- Involved with NAPWHA processes
- Involved with State or Territory Positive organisations.
- Demonstrate participation with positive women’s networks.
Representative membership, is selected through a call for Expressions of Interest process - initiated by NAPWHA and extending for a fixed term of two years.
For resource reasons, membership will be limited at any time to 15 women.
As one of the primary roles of the Network is to facilitate a broad national involvement, appointments may be preferentially made in order to ensure the maximum participation of as many States and Territories as possible, and to ensure that women participating in NAPWHA’s work have the opportunity to be a part.
The membership may, from time-to-time, coopt new members whose membership must then ratified through the NAPWHA Board.
Members of the Network are also selected to ensure a range of skills, advocacy experience and expertise is available to the group. Appointments are generally individual, not organisational.
Membership is determined by the NAPWHA Board and based on the following criteria:
- a demonstrated high level of interest in issues for HIV positive women;
- a knowledge of the diversity of women living with and affected by HIV and AIDS, and a commitment to working with all HIV positive women;
- a capacity to be able to consult with other positive women at a local State or Territory level, and a willingness to help NAPWHA consult appropriately with a wide range of HIV positive women;
- a broad awareness of the current health and support needs of HIV positive women;
- a willingness to attend teleconferences regularly;
- a willingness to observe the agreed protocols and rules of the network;
- sharing NAPWHA’s aims and objectives, and a willingness to work with the national peak body for people living with HIV and AIDS.
The group meets primarily by teleconference, with some limited capacity for face-to-face meetings. An email group is used out-of-session to facilitate discussion and consultation between meeting times, circulate information for discussion, and assist in NAPWHA’s consultation process as matters arise.
Teleconference costs are covered by NAPWHA, and airfares and travel costs will be covered by NAPWHA for face-to-face meetings. Child care arrangements will be facilitated by NAPWHA as required to support women to attend face-to-face meetings.
The group is supported by the National Portfolio & Networks Coordinator within the NAPWHA Secretariat, and is linked to the NAPWHA Board through a NAPWHA Board representative – nominated by the Board at each AGM.
NOTE: The work of this group is primarily conducted electronically, a basic knowledge of, and access to, the internet is essential.