Philippines Health Sec. Proposes Warning Parents of Gay Kids About HIV

BY HIV Plus Editors

December 05 2011 2:37 PM ET

The Philippines' head of health policy is catching heat for saying government workers should survey the homes of gay children to warn their parents that they could contract HIV.

"Parents should rein in their homosexual children and get them tested," Health Secretary Enrique Ona said Friday at an HIV/AIDS conference according to the Associated Press.

Bong Austero of the Manila Standard Today wrote Ona's "abysmal lack of political will to combat the spread of HIV/AIDS is unacceptable." He added that Ona was the subject of boos and heckling at the conference from a group called the Network to Stop HIV and AIDS in the Philippines. One of the activists in the group, Jonas Bagas, said Ona told the crowd that parents should be warned about their gay children's "problem."

Austero added, "this is the first time I actually heard a secretary of Health openly advocate a proposal that stigmatizes people."

Reacting to the proposal, the Philippines LGBT Advocacy Group called for Ona's resignation Monday, according to the AP. While a government spokeswoman Abigail Valte condemned discrimination, they did not address the call for Ona's resignation.

Tags: Prevention