“HIV is a disease, not a moral issue.”

ELCA Young Adult Cohort AIDS2014

“HIV is a disease, not a moral issue.” – Phumzile Mabizela

In these first few days of the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance Interfaith Pre-Conference and International AIDS Conference, my head is reeling with questions about morality in the face of HIV.  It’s not surprising; as a part of this conference, our delegation is frequently engaged in conversation with active sex workers and intravenous drug users, while also wrestling with presentations on how and why HIV is transmitted from person to person.

Historically, particular understandings of morality have done nothing but hinder progress toward HIV treatment and prevention.  HIV thrives in vulnerable places; both in key infected populations and particularly intimate moments.  It hits hardest in communities that are most hidden in our world: migrants, sex workers, drug users, transgendered people, and those without access to resources.  Because of the ways that HIV is transmitted, it also hits us in the most…

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