The Nation has some interesting infographics on the effect of the US’s anti-prostitution pledge. The US provides nearly 60 percent of global funds to fight the AIDS epidemic–money that low-income countries absolutely depend on. But, as Melissa Gira Grant explains, for the last decade, it’s comes with the catch–pushed by conservative Rep. Chris Smith but supported by some feminist organizations too–that any NGO receiving this funding must adopt an explicit policy opposing prostitution. And the pledge is so vague that it’s led many groups to stop providing any services to sex workers, out of fear of losing their funding.
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This terrible policy–Lori’s called it “senseless discrimination“–not only harms sex workers, who are 13.5 times more likely to be living with HIV than other women, it greatly hinders the overall effort to stem the spread of the disease. “Prevention among all sex workers is key to stopping the AIDS epidemic for many countries, according to the World Health Organization.” Hopefully, the Supreme Court will soon strike it down.