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Sex Workers Not Welcome Here

Fall 2012

"Where are all the red umbrellas?" a conference attendee asked in the busy corridors of the 2012 International AIDS Conference. She was referring to the international sex worker community, which has adopted the red umbrella as its symbol. Others also wondered why sex worker and drug user activists from around the world, who have actively participated in past conferences, were largely absent this year.

The reason? Visas. When the U. S. Government issued a travel ban in 1987 that prevented people with HIV from entering the country, activists and scientists criticized the move as both a violation of human rights and an ineffective response to the epidemic. After a 22-year battle, the ban was finally lifted; however, the victory was only partial. Applicants for U.S. visas must still answer the following two questions:

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Visit ACRIA's website and GMHC's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
 
See Also
More on U.S. Immigration Restrictions for People With HIV/AIDS

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