An AIDS conference scheduled for this week in Washington, DC, will not have 60 participants - Canadians who could not enter the US because they have HIV and didn't realize that they still had to jump through several hoops to get a temporary waiver:

As many as 60 Canadians had been turned away from the U.S. border in spite of "stated U.S. policy that foreigners living with HIV would no longer be barred from entering the country." However, even though Congress acted to repeal the law that keeps HIV+ visitors out, relevant U.S. Department of Health & Human Services regulations have not been revised, and HIV+ visitors are still not allowed to enter the country... "The 60 Canadians had planned to attend the North American Housing and HIV/AIDS Research Summit in Washington, D.C. from June 2 to June 5."

The situation echoes a recent incident in which a Cuban unsuccessfully sought to remain in the U.S. under a 1966 American law that provides for permanent U.S. residency for those who emigrate to American shores from Cuba. But in the case of Raul Hernandez, the long-standing law was superceded by the ban on HIV+ foreigners, even though Hernandez had been living in Arlington, Virginia, reported The Southern Voice in a May 20 article.

The Obama administration seems unable or unwilling to expedite this. People with HIV outside America need to know that there has been no change and the discrimination against the HIV-positive continues despite the law change and despite the change in administration. Travelers beware. They can and will detain you or turn you back.

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