"I'M proud of what the [New Labour] government has done and is doing to prevent HIV infection, as well as offering support for those living with HIV/AIDS. We have worked closely with the Terrence Higgins Trust over the last 10 years, and with them focused on health promotion with groups at most risk of HIV in England."
~ Andy Burnham MP [speaking in 2009]
Between 1999 and 2009, when New Labour were in power, recorded HIV infections doubled among UK gay men...
AID$ Inc.'s frenetic fundraising activities - which have variously been described as "grasping" and "begging" - yield it by far the largest slice of the funding pie compared to smaller, tight-knit operations like Stop AIDS and UFA who remain committed to their missions and focused on keeping their core message alive, devoid of self-interest, greed or external influence. Indeed, the need to do so can be so all-consuming that the time and energy devoted to raising funds often features some way down their list of priorities, hence their constant struggle to survive.
The alternative? To prostitute themselves to the culture of dependency on taxpayers' cash that long ago saw AID$ Inc. wave goodbye to its independence and climb into bed with outside interests, in the process becoming academical extensions of government - quangos - who speak in the same dogmatic language. Jumping and kow towing to central government's excessive diktats and demands and influenced by the lobbying of profit-motivated pharmaceutical companies, AID$ Inc.'s aggressive, compassion-led campaigns of the late 1980s that succeeded in stemming the spread of HIV and correlated health risks were soon superseded by the creepingly destructive "left-is-right/ black-is-white/2+2=5" pervasiveness of political correctness; mental programing by any other name that has been systematically used to legitimise and normalise the HIV virus, in turn eroding and decimating the collective health of MSM throughout the West and sending HIV transmission rates soaring.
"GMHC has never conducted any serious psychosocial research to find out how to design HIV prevention campaigns properly. Right now no one at GMHC knows what an effective HIV prevention campaign for gay men looks like. One of the reasons is that the money it takes from the federal government comes with restrictions that make it impossible to use it effectively. So instead our tax money and our donations are spent on what is safe, visible, and likely to bring in more donations, rather than what is efficacious."
~ Andrew Miller [Gay City News]
"Most [US] HIV prevention campaigns targeted at meth users are ridiculously shallow. The government has actively participated in the deaths of gay men by prohibiting funding from being used to disseminate the graphic information needed to make informed decisions."
~ Patrick Moore [The Village Voice]
"Charities have donors with pre-conceived notions of who must be kept sweet. Government research money is now heavily under political influence; it would be a brave academic hoping for future grants who used Government funds to conclude the latest Downing St.-trumpeted health service initiative was garbage."
~ The Cochrane Collaboration
"Britain is the birthplace of many renowned charities. In the past few years, many of these organisations have undergone a curious transformation. They have begun to receive much of their income from the State rather than from individual donors. And they've given up important aspects of their work and concentrated instead on publicity and propaganda... The public has, for the most part, not yet noticed these changes and continued to give generously to charity appeals. But awareness is growing and the charities should realise that, if they abandon their traditional role, they may also weaken the respect in which they are held, and face a long-term loss in contributions that will end by making them wholly dependent on the government."
~ The Mail on Sunday [Editorial, February 2007]
A pattern of compliance to external directives that ultimately adversely impact on gay men's health is blatant within AID$ Inc. UK, shedding light on its inability and thinly-veiled reluctance to act in the best interests of those it professes to serve.
In Britain, the HIV sector's bureaucratically-inflicted decline has taken root thanks to its accountability to management consultants/"commissioners" within the state-owned NHS. Like the gay men's health sector, the UK's once world-renowned public health service has seen its once high standards systematically eroded from within since New Labour acquired power in 1997, despite having had £269.2 billion of taxpayer pounds lavished on it. For example, while the quota of available beds has declined annually, the number of deaths from hospital-acquired infections is now over 50 times higher than in some European countries.
This publicly unaccountable, self-selecting body of commissioners, which costs the NHS around £600 million annually and has the power to make major decisions that affect society, announced in December 2006 that the entire approach of agencies like THT and GMFA would be rethought due to their "failure" to impede record rates of HIV among MSM (for the third year running over 2,600 were diagnosed HIV+ in the UK in 2007 - the highest rate on record); a decision effectively imposed on an HIV sector that has allowed itself to become a government arm responsive to its ill-conceived diktats and directives in order to secure additional funding. "We [have] little evidence as to the effectiveness of current HIV prevention programs," the commissioning body said when setting out its proposal to restructure the way AID$ Inc. UK tackles HIV prevention.
In November 2007, the London Gay Men's HIV Prevention Partnership (LGMHPP) - a central fund contributed to by London's NHS Trusts and administered by NHS commissioners - confirmed it would be slashing the budget for information resources such as booklets and advertising campaigns in gay media by 36% and axing a swath of sexual health counseling in favour of "Persuasive Interpersonal Interaction" - face-to-face interviews with gay men conducted by hundreds of volunteers converging on bars and clubs, probing and snooping into every area of their sex lives on the dubious pretext of "disseminating safe sex advice based on each individual's needs."
Dubbed "quality interaction" by the propagates of this intrusive new approach, every intimate detail gathered would then be stored on a cross-accessible central database, adding to the UK government's growing raft of sinister Big Brother measures that include 4.2 million CCTV cameras (one for every 14 citizens), a national biometric ID card, the proposed microchipping of criminals, and a multitude of databases ranging from a DNA archive to one that stores school children's fingerprints.
“Gay people are often justifiably concerned that details about their sexuality are being collected by the state and could potentially be misused by public officials in the future, for reasons completely unrelated to crime prevention or prosecution. We need laws designed to make us safer, not laws that control and monitor every aspect of our lives, and which hand over more power to a Big Brother state.”
~ Dominic Grieve [UK Shadow Home Secretary]
"Hardly a day goes by without a Minister calling for yet another vast database or yet more surveillance powers. What is wrong with Britain? Why are we sleepwalking our way into a surveillance society? This government's relentless urge to snoop, record and file every detail of our lives is putting our very democracy in danger."
~ Dr. Gus Hosein [The London School of Economics]
Essentially, the NHS commissioning body was proposing such measures to resolve the UK HIV sector's abject failure to stem the decline in the gay community's sexual health - a decline that AID$ Inc. UK allowed the NHS to conspire in and fuel by taking its cash in return for following its ludicrously shallow PC diktats and directives.
The UK HIV sector admitted as much when one of its own health workers told Gay Times in July 2007: "Most of the gay agencies involved are furious, especially as the report dismisses most of the work they've been doing to NHS specifications for the past six years."
GMFA swiftly launched a desperate damage limitation offensive in the gay press, claiming that the HIV infection rate is at record levels only because more MSM are coming forward to be tested, and that rates have in fact remained steady over the years. "The uptake of HIV testing in recent years highlights the recent success of health promotion in reducing the number of gay men with undiagnosed HIV," said GMFA head Matthew Hodson. This is the same Matthew Hodson who also opposes a ban on bareback videos on the basis that “I don’t like the thought of censorship, particularly that which discriminates against gay men," and who blatantly contradicts clearcut evidence that shows that HIV is on the increase due to more UK MSM than ever having unsafe sex, with up to 9000 estimated to be unaware that they carry the virus because they are not coming forward to be tested, particularly in the wake of prosecutions against those who recklessly or wilfully infect others.
"A while back I volunteered to help build a GMFA website to educate the seemingly ignorant gay youth on the issue of HIV and AIDS. But I was shocked when I was told that they wanted a section called 'How to have safe bareback sex'. I say we scrap them and start GMFI - Gay Men Fighting Ignorance."
~ Jeremy [Homovision]
Discrediting Hodson's fallacy that more gay men than ever are coming forward to be tested, 2007's Sigma Gay Men's Sex Survey reported that the proportion remains unchanged since 1997, while Will Nutland, The Terrence Higgins Trust's pious press spokesman (a.k.a. Head of Health Promotion), told the London listings magazine Out in December 2007: "HIV statistics gauged by ongoing surveys are in fact likely to be an underestimation, since around one in four gay men with HIV haven't had the infection diagnosed."
In December 2006, a Pink Paper reader wrote that GMFA can't not be aware of the true picture because its collection buckets were a World AIDS Day fixture at Central Station, one of a growing number of hardcore sex-on-premises venues in London where condoms are routinely shunned, barebacking is the norm and used needles and syringes are sometimes casually discarded. One such venue had to remind its members in an email that the act of deffacation, particularly in the manager's office, "is against club rules"...
"GMFA are not the sex police," parroted PC disciple Hodson, prompting a contributor to the Pink Paper's bulletin board to liken the charity's tact to that of a cancer charity begging for money in a hospital chemotherapy ward. GMFA's effective ruling body, The Terrence Higgins Trust, has since awarded a number of underground sex-on-premises venues that adopt a "code of good practice" its official 'Play Zone' seal of approval; an unenforceable code that will be policed just twice a year and risks driving those in search of unsanitised, unregulated sex even further underground to non-Play Zone venues while acting as a well-publicised lure to some young men who would not otherwise consider entering such environments. [See Dirty Little Secret]
"Those practicing unsafe sex need reminding that HIV is one of many STIs that HIV-seroconcordant couples may be discordant for...that can manifest more virulently in HIV+ gay men, accelerate HIV's progress, make HIV more infectious and play a role in such disorders as liver failure or cervical/rectal cancer. The take-home message simply has to be that super-infections may well occur and are occurring in sex clubs and backrooms throughout the UK today."
~ Philip Rochester [UK.Gay.Com discussion board]
"GMFA has the bare-faced cheek to collect money at sex-on-premises establishments where condoms are shunned, and then uses that money to fund 'Arse Classes', 'Bondage For Beginners' and 'How-To-Get-That-Stud-Out-of-His-Towel-And-Into-The-Sauna' courses on the basis that they are empowering gay men to get the sex they want. What twisted logic!"
~ Paul Clifton [Disco Damaged]
"The messages [most cruise clubs] are sending out are that diseases like HIV and hep C are no big deal, and that gay men don't have any respect for themselves."
~ Spike [London club promoter]
Heavy petitioning in the gay press resulted in the HIV prevention budget being saved. However, in March 2008, it was announced that GMFA's contract to supply London's HIV prevention campaigns wouldn’t be renewed, thereby marginalising the charity and its activities and ending a succession of PC ads that have sought to sexualise, fetishise, romanticise, trivialise and ultimately normalise the HIV virus and legitimise barebacking. Instead, the London Sexual Health Commissioning Group, which apportions HIV prevention funding, perversely awarded the three-year contract to THT, the UK's largest provider of HIV support services.
Soon after, THT announced as part of the Pan London HIV Prevention Programme contract the launch of the London Gay Men's Sexual Health Helpline phone service and face-to-face interviews "for gay men to discuss sexual health questions" - the same pretext by which the original scheme intended to converge on gay bars and clubs to obtain intimate details of gay men's sex lives - effectively enabling THT's shadowy NHS commissioners to implement their snooper’s charter and start building their Orwellian gay men's sex database via the back door…
“We are delighted to confirm these contracts,” Kensington and Chelsea Primary Care Trust Chief Executive Diana Middleditch said when announcing the changes. “The services they provide are vital to continue the excellent work being done in London to prevent and treat HIV in the gay community and enable people with HIV to improve their overall health,” she continued, while failing to explain why the HIV prevention budget was being awarded to a charity/ quango that has excelled at managing HIV while, for 25 years, consistently failed to contain and curtail the virus. “It’s in everyone’s interest, not just the gay community, to see the number of HIV infections reduced. The services that will be provided over the next three years are built on best practice and evidence of cost effectiveness. We are improving the service we provide by becoming very outcome focussed.”
Nearly three years on, in November 2010 THT has little to show for being awarded the contract. However it has spent part of the three-year prevention budget advertising its own HIV support services in HIV news magazine Positive Nation...
"The concentration of all things HIV in the hands of one organisation cannot be a good thing. THT must decide if it wants to be the dominant provider of HIV services to those who carry the virus, or a preventer of the virus. It can't be allowed to have it both ways, particularly when there is evidence to show it's become incredibly rich commodifying and pandering to the virus, and in encouraging its spread by adhering to a PC agenda that has sought to play down it's serious consequences."
~ Rob [Disco Damaged]
"We are an independent charity, rooted in the communities we serve. We use our insight to innovate and inspire change in policies, services and minds."
~ Terrence Higgins Trust [THT's Mission Statement]
Indicative of an orchestrated campaign that, for whatever reason, appears to be being waged by government bureaucrats specifically to compromise and demoralise sexual health in the UK, in February 2008 a damning survey of UK medical professionals working in sexual health concluded that their work had not been prioritised in recent years, despite the total number of STI diagnoses at sexual health clinics rising 60% between 1996 and 2005. Almost 50% accused NHS primary care trusts of not examining sexual health needs in their area in over three years, and two-thirds of trusts were found to be diverting money intended for sexual health elsewhere...
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