ACT UP questions "Sacred Sexuality" funding from DOH
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ACT UP questions "Sacred Sexuality" funding from DOH

ACT UP
AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power, Washington, DC
409 H Street NE, Washington, DC 20002
(202) 547-9404 - email actupdc@aol.com - www.actupdc.org

August 5, 2002

Ivan Torres
HIV/AIDS Administration
District of Columbia Department of Health
717 14th Street NW Suite 1000
Washington, DC 20005

Dear Mr. Torres:

Please provide me with documents relating to an event held by the Whitman Walker Clinic's G-Net program on August 3, 2002 entitled 'Sacred Sexuality - A retreat day for Gay and bisexual men.' According to promotional materials,

"this program is funded wholly or in part by the Government of the District of Columbia, HIV/AIDS Administration." (Washington Blade ad, 7/31/02).

I specifically require documentation which indicates:

1 The funding source(s) for 'Sacred Sexuality.'
2 The total public expenditure for 'Sacred Sexuality.'
3 A copy of the contract between the government of the District of Columbia and Whitman Walker's G-Net program under which 'Sacred Sexuality' was provided as an 'HIV prevention' activity.

In addition, you may recall that last year, the DC HIV/AIDS Administration had to pull a publicly funded brochure entitled 'A Christian Response to AIDS,' after concluding that it is inappropriate for government to be promoting religion. Did the program content and materials for 'Sacred Sexuality' undergo a similar review? I attended this 6 1/2 hour event, which emphasized New Age theology, and featured a series of rituals from Native American and Eastern religions.

My final concern is that none of the informational brochures were locally produced, and fail to include local contacts for further information and referrals. The pamphlet entitled 'Safer Sex can be Fun!' actually lists the AIDS hotlines for Northern and Southern California.

Thank you for your assistance in this matter. I look forward to your prompt reply.

Sincerely,

Wayne Turner

cc: Bob Summersgill, President, Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance
The Hon. David A. Catania
The Hon. Carol Schwartz
The Hon. Sandy Allen
Art Spitzer, ACLU - National Capital Area
Dr. Tom Coburn, Co Chair, Presidential Advisory Council on HIV and AIDS


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