New York Times Examines Growing Power of Advocacy In China on Issues Such as HIV/AIDS
The New York Times on Tuesday examined how China's "once totalitarian system" increasingly is giving way to advocacy on a range of issues, including HIV/AIDS. The Times examines the story of Liu Xianhong, who contracted HIV from a blood transfusion during childbirth and whose son also is HIV-positive. Her story was publicized by a prominent journalist and became a "cause celebre" for a new class of advocates who are using the country's legal system to fight for social justice, something that would have been "unimaginable as recently as two or three years ago," the Times reports. Liu's case was championed by advocates through meetings that had to be "scheduled and rescheduled in different locations to avoid detection by the police," the Times reports. Beijing last month implemented tighter measures on the collection and distribution of blood products, a move that HIV advocates "attribute at least partly to their work," the Times reports. According to the Times, many of China's leaders are wary of the "dangers [that] an independent civil society poses to the authority of the state," but others acknowledge that the government "cannot deal effectively with every issue without contributions from advocates, civic organizations and intellectuals" (French, New York Times, 4/11).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.