Entry forbidden



On July 22, starts the World AIDS Conference to be held in the U.S., but apparently not everyone is welcome. According to immigration regulations, any person who did or does sex work for a living, and express it in the visa application to the U.S., will not receive the visa due the international policy on this issue of the U.S. Government.

The World AIDS Conference, organized by International AIDS Society (IAS), brings together over 30,000 experts in various fields, including researchers, legislators and patients. This is one of the most important spaces for global health and provides a unique opportunity for understanding the fundamental relationship between the protection of human rights and HIV/AIDS detention.

This is the first time the United States is hosting the event since 1990, due to the access restriction to the country of people living with HIV. However, the responsible for opening its doors, will do it half.

Unfortunately, U.S. immigration law prohibits any person who did or does sex work to obtain the necessary visa to enter the country. The visa application specifically asks if the person requesting the visa has been involved in “prostitution or vice trade” or if has ordered in the last 10 years.

What options are left? Lying about our work and try to show that we are «socially, economically and financially solvent» and we can travel back home. On the other hand, the invitation letter, confirmation of grant or registration are useless, because the employee responsible for issuing the visa, apply anyway restriction regulations.

Thus, denying entry to sex workers, the Conference will not really represent all key populations in HIV response.

With this regulation, USA would be contrary to the Guidance Note from UNAIDS disseminated in 2011 which expressed that “HIV prevention activities must promote the empowerment of female sex workers and that public order forces and the judicial system must protect the rights of sex workers and their clients”.

From the Latin America and Hispanic Caribbean Network of Female Sex Workers (RedTraSex) we join the campaign because we reject the discriminatory attitude of the U.S. government and we call for States and United Nations to support us in this negotiation. We hold that it is the responsibility of the IAS and co-organizers of the Conference to resolve this situation urgently, since apparently they could not foresee it.

States must demonstrate their full commitment with public health and human rights through action to allow everyone participate in the Conference with full freedom.

We invite all people committed to the elimination of HIV to support this campaign: *A Call to Action on Sex Work and HIV*

To support this request send the following information to: iac2012sexworkers@gmail.com

• Name
• Surname
• Country
• Organization (if relevant)
• I am authorized to sign on behalf of my organization above mentioned to support this statement and appear in the list of support: Yes / No
• Title / position or function within the organization (if relevant)

Issue repercussions: * Corresponsales Clave *

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