Thursday, July 17, 2008

United States (Finally) Ends HIV Travel Ban

As Joe says, "and the United States inches closer to the civilized world." Tied to the legislation that just passed to renew the President's Emergency Program for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) was a provision ending the ban on HIV-positive foreign travelers. The U.S. was one of only a few countries - Armenia, Brunei, China, Iraq, Qatar, South Korea, Libya, Moldova, Oman, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Sudan were the others, according to HIVplus - that forbade HIV-positive non-citizens from crossing their borders.

The other good news is that the bill passed without a particularly disgusting amendment proposed by Sen. Elizabeth Dole (R-NC) that would have renamed the bill to honor the late Sen. Jesse Helms (also R-NC, hated on previously at JAWNNY here). Yay!

For a particularly moving reaction, I suggest reading this post by Andrew Sullivan, who may be the most well-known person affected by this bill.

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