After George Ayala learned last month that San Francisco and Oakland had been chosen to co-host the International AIDS Conference in 2020, he quickly published a statement of disapproval.
Ayala, an Oakland-based AIDS advocate, does not want the conference in his own city — or anywhere else in the United States, for that matter.
His statement of opposition and a second one drafted by colleagues at other AIDS organizations have been co-signed by hundreds of organizations and individuals in the United States and around the world.
Their biggest concern: long-standing U.S. visa policies will prevent many of the people most affected by AIDS and HIV, including drug users and sex workers who live in other countries, from attending the conference. They also worry about new restrictions affecting travel from Muslim countries.
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