Speaking of discrimination: it seems that the License & Permits Unit of Atlanta’s Police Department is none-too-fond of masseurs with HIV.
That’s what James Dustin (pictured) found out the hard way. It seem that they consider the risk of blood-to-blood contact between masseur and client to be so high, that Dustin has qualified as a “direct threat” to HIV transmission. As such, he can’t get official permission to practice his sensual craft.
The Southern Voice reports:
Individuals seeking a massage permit in Atlanta must complete a series of applications, pay $250 in fees and consent to a criminal background check. They must also submit proof of certification, reference letters, two photographs and a health certificate to the License & Permits Unit.
The health certificate requires a doctorâ€™s signature indicating the applicant is â€œin sound mental and physical health, and free of all contagious or communicable diseases.â€ HIV/AIDS is considered a communicable disease, although it can only be transmitted through the exchange of bodily fluids such as blood and semen.
Obviously this is direct discrimination and, as they’re wont to do, the ACLU has joined the fight in over-turning the HIV qualification. ACLU Legal Director Beth Littrell says, “Any administrative action that categorically denies people to practice their trade, that has no foundation in public safety and public health, is blatantly prejudicial.”
We have to ask: is the License and Permits Unit really concerned about blood-to-blood contact? We’re more inclined to think they’re worried about the semen. No one asks for a bloody ending, now do they?