India: Restore Original HIV/AIDS Bill, Urge Activists
December 11, 2008
Indian AIDS advocates gathered yesterday in Mumbai to protest changes officials are making to proposed anti-discrimination legislation. The initial draft was made with the help of patients, health activists, lawyers, and others over a period of two years. "We found that many of our rights-based issues had been dropped" in the law ministry's revisions to the draft, said Eldred Tellis of the Sankalp Rehabilitation Trust. People with HIV/AIDS would only be allowed to stay in special homes during their rehabilitation back to general society, which risks further isolating them, said Prabha Desai of the Sanmitra Trust. In addition, plans for free check-ups, medicine, testing, and authorization to distribute prevention-related materials such as condoms and sterile needles have been scrubbed, said Ujwala Kadam, president of Soudamini, which targets HIV-positive women and children. The activists called on the health ministry, which now has the proposal, to restore the original draft.
Times of India (New Delhi)
This article was provided by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. Visit the CDC's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.