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AIDS conference
will include abstinence-only opponents

AIDS conference
will include abstinence-only opponents

Several hundred AIDS experts opposed to the Bush administration's emphasis on abstinence-only programs to fight the spread of HIV will be in attendance at the 16th International AIDS Conference, being held August 13-18 in Toronto, where they plan to present studies showing that abstinence-only programs are ineffective, The Toronto Star reports. The Caucus for Evidence-Based Prevention, which includes Population International, the Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR), the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States, and more than three dozen other groups, plans to present alternatives to what it says are the Bush administration's flawed policies driven by conservative political ideology.

The caucus also plans to produce a daily newspaper during the conference. The newspaper will highlight scientifically backed HIV prevention strategies and also alert conference attendees to presentations, workshops, and discussions about alternatives to abstinence-only education.

"We're going to make the public in Toronto aware that there's a lot more going on in preventing AIDS than abstinence and being faithful, which are the answers most promoted by the U.S. government," Judy Auerbach, amfAR's vice president for public policy and program development, told the Star. (The Advocate)

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