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Archive for Saturday, February 16, 2008

Ban on HIV-positive diplomats dropped

February 16, 2008

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— Under pressure from a lawsuit, the State Department is changing rules that had disqualified HIV-positive people from becoming U.S. diplomats.

Effective Friday, the department removed HIV from a list of medical conditions that automatically prevent foreign service candidates from meeting an employment requirement that they be able to work anywhere in the world.

The change was made after consultation with medical experts and in response to a lawsuit filed by an HIV-positive man who was denied entry into the foreign service despite being otherwise qualified, the department said.

Prospective diplomats with HIV will now be considered for the foreign service on a case-by-case basis, along with those with other designated ailments like cancer to determine if they meet the "worldwide availability" standard, it said.

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