“On World AIDS Day, we remember those lost and stand with persons living with HIV and AIDS.
“World AIDS Day lets us pay tribute to the activists, scientists, businesses and governments that have mobilized to confront this virus. Together, we have reached a point where what was considered a death sentence is now a manageable condition.
“This epidemic has claimed the lives of tens of millions across the world and continues to take lives. Here at home, our government is working to fight this epidemic. We are taking real action. Since Oct. 1, our government has been funding a PrEP program which is helping hundreds of people avoid infection.
“I pay tribute to Edmonton’s own Michael Phair who fought tirelessly to bring awareness to this issue. Shame and ignorance have enabled the disease to spread. The only way to combat this is through awareness.
“I encourage all Albertans to wear a red ribbon today, as a symbol of their commitment to the cause.
“With World AIDS Day marking 30 years, this is a time to reflect on how much we can accomplish together.
“Let’s end the tragedies, so we have more triumphs to celebrate.”