Taipei mayor Ma hopes local HIV midway home "patients out only"

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Thursday, March 2, 2006 Taipei city Mayor Ma Ying-jeou hoped HIV-infected patients of Harmony Home Association "out only and don't come in" when he was hosting a Public Meeting with community members.

Ma hosted a public meeting in WenShan District. A Chief Of Village from the district complained to Ma that the Harmony Home Association, a halfway-home for HIV-infected people within the district, makes the members panic.

Ma replied that when dealing with this problem, city government must concern both professionalism and feelings of the community.

Ma said that Public Health Bureau would brief the community monthly, and "hope patients of the center stay out only and don't come in." Ma also said to locate another place to provide centralized carring as soon as possible.

This remark disappoints the association. Nicole Yang, secretary general of the association, said she was not invited to the meeting, and stressed that HIV-infected people have rights of residency, but the people in this midway home have no place to go. She said government should help to place them.

Last July, community officials learned about the association. The association, along with carring and housing of under-supported HIV-infected people in Taiwan then have been under heavy disputes.

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