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June 25, 2008

Senators John Kerry and Gordon Smith Slam HIV Travel Ban

In a Washington Times (washingtontimes.com, 6/25) editorial, 2004 U.S. presidential candidate Senator John Kerry (D-Mass) and Senator Gordon Smith (R-Ore) say the United States should “strike from the books” a law that prohibits HIV-positive people from entering the country.

Kerry and Smith say the U.S. is one of just 12 countries that uphold such an exclusion. “Unfortunately, as we open our wallets to fund lifesaving treatments to those living with HIV/AIDS overseas, we will not open our doors,” they write. “Such a discriminatory policy has no basis in public health, let alone common sense.”

Kerry and Smith commend President Bush for his plans to weaken the ban, but maintain that it should be removed altogether “so that HIV is considered like any other infectious disease.”


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