Thai politician says HIV rating is increasing because of gays on TV


While speaking to Thai media after governing a conference on HIV, Thaweesak Lertprapan claimed that showing different LGBT-related things on TV turned homosexuality into a ‘fashion’, making people imitate the behavior they see on TV and in the Internet. which led to higher rates of HIV. Talking to Khao Sod English, director of the AIDS Access Foundation Nimit Tienudom said that there was no scientifically proven evidence which could serve as a logical background for the politician’s words. Midnight Poonkassetwattana, executive director of APCOM, added that the situation is quite opposite – people are infected because they know much less than they should: “[A] big issue is that many young gay men don’t seek out HIV education, testing and treatment services for fear of the discrimination and exclusion they could experience if they’re ‘outed’ or if they are diagnosed with HIV.” Having gay characters on TV helps make young gay men feel more comfortable about their sexuality which in turn means it’s more likely that they will seek support for issues related to HIV and their health.”


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