Newspaper reports today suggest that the entertainer and presenter Graham Norton was banned by the BBC from wearing a red ribbon on his TV show last week (29th November), even though all his guests were able to do so.
If this an accurate representation of the facts then shame on you BBC. The hardest part of dealing with the HIV epidemic is making the issue visible to the wider public. The red ribbon not only highlights awareness of HIV and those living with it, but also reminds us of all those we have lost to the condition. It has been a symbol that has been internationally recognised since 1991.
It is a symbol of hope and remembrance, and for the BBC to ban the wearing of the ribbon by people presenting their programmes is beyond belief.
An explanation of how the red ribbon came to be the symbol for HIV awareness and support can be found on the National Aids Trust Site, a link is below;
Links to some of the articles today are below;
This sends completely the wrong message and it is high time the BBC realised that this is not an acceptable response. Such action undermines the progress made by all HIV support and education services in overcoming stigma and raising awareness.
Moreover, is an insult to those living with the condition, and to the memory of those lost as a result of it.
Good on you Mr Norton for refusing to be told not to wear the ribbon on your show, we salute you!
Time to think again BBC.
The Crescent Team