POLITICO Magazine Examines Role Of Social Conservatism, Religion In Russia’s HIV Epidemic
POLITICO Magazine: How Social Conservatism Fueled Russia’s HIV Epidemic
“…The Kremlin and its allies are pushing a socially conservative, hands-off, and often church-influenced approach to sexual and reproductive health, as well as drug policy. Fueling an epidemic, state policies and inaction have led to more cases than ever of Russians contracting or dying from HIV/AIDS. … Russia’s growing HIV crisis is seemingly no match for the Orthodox Church, which preaches faith and family values as the cure-all for the virus. A burgeoning alliance between Russian President Vladimir Putin and the church in recent years has fueled an environment where sexual education in schools is forbidden, clean needle programs are shunned as sinful, and attacks on women’s and gay rights are state-sanctioned…” (Jones, 2/25).