Monitoring Parliamentary Responses to HIV/AIDS
in the SADC Region
A questionnaire for parliamentary staff
The HIV-Unit at the SADC Parliamentary Forum is collaborating with the University of Cape Town in a project that seeks to collect information on how Parliaments in the SADC region are contributing to the overall response to HIV and AIDS in the different countries, and how the HIV-Unit at SADC PF has assisted parliaments in making a constructive contribution in this regard. The research has a three-fold purpose: to identify best practices that can strengthen the contributions across all Parliaments; to highlight weaknesses that need additional resources and; to assess how Parliaments can best be supported by the SADC PF HIV-unit to make a positive contribution to the AIDS response.
The project will collect information from different stakeholders with particular insights into how Parliaments use whatever mandates and resources they have to ensure an effective response.
You have been selected to contribute information through this questionnaire as you are one of the members of staff at Parliament in your country with the most knowledge on what actions Parliament as a whole, and the relevant Portfolio Committee, have taken in relation to the AIDS response.
The questionnaire consists of 41 questions that each has a given set of response options. These questions are grouped into six ‘themes’, of which the first three refer to core functions of Parliament – representation, legislation and oversight – and the last three are specific to parliamentary activity in the AIDS response:
Representation. To what extent does Parliament allow for the representation of views and expertise held by civil society organisations and other organised stakeholders?
Legislation. What, if any, legislative activity has been taken in relation to the response to AIDS?
Oversight. How is Parliament scrutinizing Government performance in the AIDS response, and is there a difference in the level of oversight of government interventions and the overall budget process for the AIDS response?
Mobilizing HIV awareness. In what ways are MPs and Parliament taking active steps to break stigma and raise awareness of the need for behaviour change among communities in society?
Coordination. How is Parliament collaborating with other institutions in the AIDS response?
Internal HIV resilience. How is Parliament protecting its staff and MPs from HIV and ensuring access to treatment and counselling for those who need it?
For each of the questions, please place a mark in the box next to the response option that corresponds most closely to the correct answer. On some questions we ask you to also elaborate with some additional text to give as complete an answer as possible. On a few questions you have the option to place a mark next to more than one response option.
Please note that you are not expected to immediately know the answer to all the questions in this questionnaire. It is most likely that you will need to consult some of your colleagues and/or do some research in other source materials in order to find the answers to some of the questions. If you cannot find the answer even after that effort, you must please indicate that you have not found the answer in the appropriate box.
If you need further clarification of any of the questions, please send an email as soon as possible to the two researchers at University of Cape Town, Dr. Per Strand (email@example.com) and Ms. Alexandra Searle (firstname.lastname@example.org), and we will assist you further.
Please fill out the questionnaires on your computers and send us the completed questionnaire via email as an attached MS Word document at the latest on Friday the 15th of July. Please send the completed questionnaires to the two email addresses given above to Dr. Strand and Ms. Searle.
It is important that you remember that this is not a test of your expertise on the questions we ask – the results will not reflect back on you and your individual effort or skill as research staff at Parliament. In fact, it would be unreasonable to expect that you should know the answers to all these questions immediately.
We are trying to learn more about how Parliaments contribute to the AIDS response so that we – together with the relevant stakeholders – can strengthen parliaments’ contributions even further. In order to do this research correctly we rely on your expertise and professionalism to do the very best you can to find the correct answers to the questions and give as much relevant additional information as you can when we ask you to do so.
We thank you most sincerely for your effort,
Boemo Sekgoma Per Strand
Sabelo Mbokazi Alexandra Searle
SADC PF HIV-unit University of Cape Town