Caucus rejects 'openly gay' rule for officers
Continued from page I
On second call for self-nominations
to HGLPC officer and board positions, Dennis Spencer, current vice
president of the caucus, withdrew
his name as a candidate for re-elec
tion to his position and nominated
himself for president. There were no
nominations for the position of vice
president, and no challengers to incumbents Hollier and Kevin Davidson for the offices of secretary and
Ed Barnes announced hi6 candidacy for vacant board of directors
Position 4, a three year term, and
David Fowler self nominated for
board Position 6, for a term expiring
who had previously announced for
board seat 8, withdrew her name
from consideration because of a
change in employment status. There
were no second call nominations for
board seats 8, 5 and 6. Brian Keever
had announced on first call for re
election to board seat 6.
Third call for nominations and
the election will be held Jan. 17 at
the caucus' regular meeting location, Metropolitan Multi-Service
Center on West Gray.
In other business. Joe'["horn torn it
the police advisory committee advised members of a hearing to determine the caucus' official responses
to questions from Mayor Kathy
Whitmire to minority groups represented in the coalition. The questions are intended to assist in the
mayor's selection of a new Houston
police chief, Thornton said. The
meeting will be held at noon Sunday,
Jan 7, at the HGLPC office at 900
Dara Bloom of the Coalition to
End Clinic Violence asked caucus
members for help and support with
their efforts. The groupescorts women into abortion clinics through
picket lines of protesters who are often physically violent, Bloom said.
Chair Kay Hill solicited parlicipa
tion for an inter-organizational "di
rect action" planned for the opening
of Randall's at Westheimer and
Shepherd on Jan. 12. The groups
will be protesting the recent firing of
a gay man whose roommate was rumored to have AIDS, and continued
defense by Randall's officials in
court documents of the company's
"right" to dismiss gays and people
with AIDS from employment.
Hill acknowledged several people
in the room who had filed for positions within the Harris County
Democratic Party. Seven caucus
members were seeking election or reelection to precinct chairships, and
Leslie Perez had filed as acandidate
for party chair.
conference declaring "the
if the Committee to Re
tire Brad Wright" was announced
Wright, the conservative Republican who chaired the House public
health committee during the 71st
state legislature, did not seek re-elec
tion to his seat in the state House of
Representatives. Members of a
statewide committee organ wed to
oust Wright are claiming victory,
saying their efforts made it difficult
for the representative to raise needed funds for his campaign. Hill said
Simultaneous conferences were
scheduled in Houston, Austin and
Dallas for Thursday, Jan. 4, he said.
FRIDAY. JANUARY 5. 1989 . MONTROSEVOICE 3
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Fundamentalists plan conference on 'homosexual healing'
ANAHEIM,Calif. (API^A fundamentalist Orange County Christian group led by one of the nation's strongest critics of homosexuality is planning a national conference this month in Washington
on "homosexuality healing!'
The Rev. Lou Sheldon said bee.
28 the conference sponsored by his
Traditional Values Coalition will
be held Jan. 26. The meeting's exact location will be kept secret to
minimize protests by gay rights
activists, he said.
The conference will
forts to persuade gay I
bians to change their sexual orientation, Sheldon said.
It also will consider ways to prevent gays from winning public approval through legislation, he
said. Sheldon called the gay lifestyle and legislation favoring it "a
threat to traditional family values
set forth in every document of our
government from the Mayflower
Local gay rights activists said
Dec. 28 they will protest the Washington conference, as they protested an Oct. 10 symposium held
by the California Coalition for
Traditional Values in Anaheim.
That symposium argued that gays
were a threat to family values.
"I suspect we'll have a massive
turnout to protest what he's doing" said John Duran, an Orange
County gay attorney. "Everywhere he goes to spread his lies,
we'll be there. He's so filled with
hate he's lost all ability for rational thinking:'
About 40 gay rights activists
were arrested when they protested
the Anaheim conference where
William Allen, then chairperson of
the U.S. Commission on Civil
Rights, angered gays with a
speech titled "Blacks, Animals,
Homosexuals: What is a Minority?"
Allen resigned his post shortly
after the conference when a public
furor developed over his com-
The conference could represent
a move by Sheldon to take his
movement national, said the Rev.
Jerry Sloan, a Sacramento gay ac-
"They're making us theobject of
probably the greatest religious
persecution since the Pilgrims
came to this country" said Sloan.
"It's an ugly form of bigotry"
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Police harassing possible AIDS victims, say program director
SAN DIEGO (API-Leaders of a
federal program to combat AIDS
among drug addicts say San Diego police are harassing clients and
keeping them from coming for
testing and counseling.
Alfredo Velasco, director of
Horizontes, said police have
frisked and apprehended their clients, have been sarcastic, arrogant and accusatory of staff workers and have even arrested one
staff member on suspicion of heroin use, forcing him to take a drug
test. The test showed he was clean.
"I don't give a hoot who they're
after. We're doing them and the
county a favor, preventing the
spread of AIDS;' Velasco said.
He said he wants officers simply
to stay away from West Park, adjacent to the San Ysidro Park and
Recreation Center, on Wednesday
mornings when Horizontes workers wait for drug addicts to show
up. A nurse with the county
Health Department accompanies
the group to draw blood for test-
County health officer Dr Donald Ramras is considering formally requesting that the Police Department stay away from the park
when Horizontes is there.
"We would prefer that they do
whatever they have to do, but not
in conjunction with where (the
program is operating)," he said.
"There's no question that this impacts our activity and that of
Horizontes in trying to educate
this group of people."
His staff has told him that the
Horizontes program has made
small progress in getting drug addicts to change their high-risk behavior.
Police spokesperson Capt. Richard Toneck said police frequently
are in the area because the park is
a hangout for drug abusers. He
said whenever officers see someone who is wanted for any crime,
or apparently on drugs, that person will be apprehended.
"I think we're going to run into
loggerheads on this issue" Toneck
said. "We can't just avoid going to
theparkjust because they're there.
That's not going to happen!'
Velasco believes his program is
dealing wilh far more life-threatening issues than the apprehension of a heroin addict who, in a
worst-case situation, might be a
frequent armed robber or burglar.
The program, one of 60 similar
federally funded programs in the
country, is designed to communicate the dangers of AIDS virus infection to a group of people who
may otherwise have no contact
with health officials.
The program pays addicts SHI to
lie tested for exposure to the virus
that causes AIDS and another$10
to return for their results. Six
months later, the same addicts are
sought out and again are paid $10
to be tested and another $10 to return for their results.
Outreach workers also distribute bottles of bleach to clean
needles and syringes and con-
Velasco said meetings with police to resolve the situation have
been friendly but unproductive.
Because five percent of the 1,81X1
people tested so far haveshown infection with the AIDS virus, it is
important that they all return for
counseling lo prevent the spread
of AIDS through sexual contact or
The three-year program, funded
by a $1 million grant from the National Institute of Drug Abuse, so
far has paid more than 1,200 addicts to participate in the project.
Alberto Mata. a senior adviser
with the National Institute of
Drug Abuse (NIDA). said none of
NIDA's other programs in the
country has experienced such
problems with police.
"It sounds like the police are using Horizontes so they don't have
to hunt people down" he said in a
telephone interview from Washington D.C.
UH begins AIDS prevention project for teens
"You can get AIDS just by shaking hands with someone who tests
"There's no way you can get
AIDS the first time you have kcx''
These are two of many misconceptions teenagers hold about
AIDS, according to the University
of Houston's Psychology/Behavioral Medicine Research Group.
The UH researchers have been
awarded an initial two-year,
$242,671 grant from the National
Institute of Menial Health to uncover these misconceptions and
examine how teenagers decide on
sexual activity, in light of the
growing threat of the spread of
Dr. Richard I. Evans, professor
of psychology, directs the research
group and its teenage AIDS pre
vention project, which will collect
data on more than 200(1 Houston
area high school students.
"We need to understand the misconceptions teens hold regarding
AIDS so effective prevention programs can be developed and integrated into the high school curriculum," said Evans.
The multi-faceted will research
several areas. Key subjects to be
included arc the amount of knowl
edge students actually have about
AIDS and its transmission; thede-
gree that drugs, alcohol and emotions influence risky sexual practices among teens and whether
gender difference relates to being
at risk for AIDS. The project will
also concentrate on developing a
psycho logical-social profile of students who are at risk for contracting AIDS and determining the validity of various ethnic and racial
stereotypes of those who are "at
risk." It is possible lhat many misconceptions exist concerning teenagers who are believed to be at risk
for AIDS, the researchers said.
Following this initial two year
study, the UH team has been encouraged to extend the project into
the development and evaluation of
a three year AIDS prevention program.
Assisting in the project are Drs.
J. Greg Getz, research coordinator,
and Linda Jackson, community-
relations coordinator. Also participating are the City of Houslon
Health Department and local
school districts. General results
will be made available to the
school districts, but the identity of
each participating teenager will
be kept completely confidential,
the researchers said.
Measure would close AIDS care house
JACKSON, Miss. (API—A boarding house for AIDS victims may
close because of increased monitoring and a proposed bill that
would classify it as a hospice.
State Health Officer Dr. Alton
Cobb has instructed the Health
Department's licensure and certification division to more closely
monitor the Sandifer House.
The house, named after its director, Eddie Sandifer, also could not
continue to exist in that neighborhood under a bill proposed by si ate
Sen. Wootsie Tate of Picayune. It
would be classified as a hospice—
and thus a commercial enterprise.
The area is not zoned for commercial businesses. Tate told ihe State
Board of Health, which met Dec.
15 in Jackson.
"We have the authority to regulate health-care facilities," said
Men da I Kemp, director of the
licensure and certification divi
sion, "The problem is fitting the
home into a category we have for
"We've been there three times.
We've interviewed residents.
We've determined it's a boarding
house. Yes, the people there have a
disease that will lead to death. But
they are managing their own affairs. They come and go as they
please. I know there have been
deaths there. Periodically, people
will be bed bound. If it does pass
the threshold into some category
that requires licensing, we will
close it down."
The Sandifer House will probably violate the department's licensing standards at some point,
"I do not believe that house belongs in that area," said Tate, who
told the board shemoved out ofthe
Jackson neighborhood because of
the 12-bed house.
Tate has introduced one bill for
licensing hospices and another to
establish a 60-bed nursing home
for AIDS patients. Currently, state
health regulations define a hos-
programs for Medicare and Medi-
The Sandifer House has provided help to a lot of people, Cobb
said. "1 think we're going to need a
lot more than the Sandifer House
to care for these people," he said.
"While we're busy trying to control this one, let's create an alter-
"We're going to monitor it more
often and keep it under closer surveillance."
Sandifer, executive director of
the Mississippi Persons with
AIDS-HIV Project, was out of
town and could not be reached for
The Board of Health tabled until
its Feb. 14 meeting any action on
legislation proposed by Tate or
Sen. Barbara Blanton of Brandon.
Health Department staff members maintain the only additional
legislation needed is appropriate
funds for the agency to provide
AIDS education, counseling, testing, disease surveillance and partner notification. The department
also supports a law prohibiting
discrimination against people infected with the AIDS virus in employment, housing, education and
access to medical care based solely
on their infection status.
Margaret Moize of Jackson, a
chief opponent of the Sandifer
House, maintained her Belhaven
Heights neighborhood is severely
affected by current AIDS policy. "I
don't believe a neighborhood
should be taken over and made to
serve a purpose it wasn't meant to
serve," Moize said.
Tate's proposed AIDS bill,
which the Health Department estimates would cost $3.3 million over
three years to implement, deals
primarily with legal issues about
AIDS. Blantan's bill, which has a
cost estimate of $9 million over
three years, stresses education
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