August 16, 2009

August 16, 2009
End the US HIV Travel Ban


Thanks for joining me for another day in my life. Today is a big day and I hope you are having a safe and great weekend so far.

Yesterday was the Denver AIDS Walk and Dab the AIDS Bear was honored to be included in the festivities. We would like to thank Rob and his partner for being not only great hosts but also great new Ambassadors of Hope. Thanks for all your help. We will have pictures ready soon so stay on the lookout for them.

Today is the rallies for ending the US HIV travel ban. The travel ban is something I have thought should have been revoked well over a decade ago since we know how HIV is spread and how it isn't. It just did not make any sense from any stand point except discrimination and ignorance.

Larry Bryant and Martin Roomer have down an excellent job our coordinating rallies on both sides of the border. Dab the AIDS Bear Project is proud to be one of the sponsors and Dab the AIDS Bear had been looking forward to the event for weeks. So stay tune for those pictures also. They will hopefully be ready in about a week or so.

So how can you help end the travel ban? Read the following for more information on how and why to do your part.

The 44th President of the US Barack Obama is in the process of putting new regulations to lift the travel ban imposed back in 1993 by an act of congress. In July of 2008 congress voted for PEPFAR Bill with an amendment attached to repeal that Ban - Bush signed the Bill into law at the end of July 2008'. We are in a waiting period as the Office and Management and Budget looks into suggested regulation changes. IN the meantime there are waivers for HIV + travelers into the US. For those of you with questions regarding the issue please google Senate Bill S-2486 (July 2008) here is a link to the Bill as passed last year http://www.martinstorm.com/Kerry%20Smith%20Bill.pdf

HIV Country Restrictions & Retreats Online http://www.plwha.org

The following counties are listed by Sens. Kerry & Smith in their bill at the time of the PEPFAR signing - Armenia, Brunei, China, Iraq, Quatar, South Korea, Libya, Moldava, Oman, The Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia & Sudan. China removed the ban December 2008 following the signing of the Bill by Bush.

Also please be more than aware of the following -

This ban not only denies entry to HIV+ travelers to the US, but also denies the path to citizenship to thousands of HIV+ people already living in the USA. It is a travel and immigration ban for HIV positive people. HIV+ people already living in the US can't have access to a green card or to American Citizenship. That makes the lives of thousands in the US an extremely difficult reality, much different from the American Dream that brought them here, that dream became a nightmare.

For those of you wishing to apply for the "waiver" I finally found the link to give the information - http://www.us-immigration-explained.com/immigration-law/blog/visitors/streamlined-waiver-application-for-hiv-positive-visitors/

There you go, not get to it. And thanks. Until we are together again; here's wishing you health, hope and happiness.



big bear hug,





Daddy Dab