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Commentary & Opinion

U.S. Requirement That AIDS Groups Sign Pledge Against Sex Work "Sabotages" Those It Aims to Protect, Editorial Says

August 8, 2005

Although the Bush administration's pledge to spend $15 billion over five years to fight HIV/AIDS worldwide is "admirable," the administration's policy requiring groups receiving those funds to pledge to oppose commercial sex work and sex trafficking "sabotages the very victims the law purports to defend," a Houston Chronicle editorial says (Houston Chronicle, 8/7). The Bush administration in June notified U.S. organizations providing HIV/AIDS-related services in other countries that they had to sign a pledge opposing commercial sex work and sex trafficking to be considered for federal funding. The policy stems from two 2003 laws, including an amendment to legislation (HR 1298) authorizing the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief that prohibits funds from going to any group or organization that does not have a policy "explicitly opposing prostitution and sex trafficking" (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 6/10). However, some not-for-profit organizations, while not endorsing sex work, "simply offer compassion and respect for women with no alternative," according to the editorial. The result of the pledge requirement is that "extraordinarily valuable nonprofits are censoring successful programs or rejecting U.S. aid for fear of being labeled noncompliant," the editorial says. The U.S. "advanced the only moral response possible when it committed billions to the AIDS war," the editorial concludes, adding, "Distorting and hobbling this commitment with ideological bullying is neither moral, effective or humane" (Houston Chronicle, 8/7).

Back to other news for August 8, 2005


Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, search the archives, or sign up for email delivery at www.kaisernetwork.org/dailyreports/hiv. The Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, a free service of the Kaiser Family Foundation, by The Advisory Board Company. © 2004 by The Advisory Board Company and Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.



  
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This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
 
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