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After public hearings and consideration of testimony and documentary evidence, the Board of Supervisors finds and declares that the medical condition described as acquired immune deficiency syndrome, and commonly known as AIDS, is a deadly disease which has the potential to affect every segment of the City's population. AIDS was first recognized in 1981. It is now seen as the top priority of the United States Public Health Service.
AIDS is the most severe manifestation of a spectrum of clinical disease caused by a virus, variously known as human T-lymphotropic virus type III, lymphadenopathy-associated virus, or AIDS-associated retrovirus, which attacks and cripples the body's immune system by killing T-helper lymphocytes, thereby leaving the body vulnerable to opportunistic infections and malignancies. A person afflicted with AIDS can suffer a variety of viral, bacterial, fungal, and protozoal infections and malignancies which eventually lead to death, usually within one year after diagnosis.
The spread of the virus has occurred only through the exchange of body fluids, that is blood, blood products, or semen, between individuals. No evidence exists to indicate that the virus can be spread by casual person-to-person contact. Medical studies of families in which one or more members have been infected with HTLV-III/LAV/ARV show no spread of the virus other than through sexual intercourse or from mother to fetus in utero. Medical studies of hospital personnel caring for AIDS patients show no spread of the virus other than through needle sticks. The public health of the danger presented by the virus and its subsequent manifestations of AIDS-related complex and AIDS is caused by a lengthy asymptomatic period of infection during which an apparently healthy individual may unknowingly spread the disease to other persons through the exchange of blood, blood products, or semen. AIDS is concentrated primarily in urban areas, with the City and County of San Francisco having the largest incidence of the disease in the country. In the opinion of the scientific, medical, and public health communities, AIDS will continue to increase at a high rate within our City for the foreseeable future.
AIDS and AIDS-related complex by their nature have created a minority of our citizens who are afflicted with a seriously disabling condition whose ultimate outcome is fatal. Individuals infected with the virus represent a significant segment of our population particularly victimized due to the nature of their infection and to the present climate of misinformation, ignorance, and fear in the general population. Discrimination against victims of AIDS and AIDS-related conditions exists in the City and County of San Francisco. Persons with AIDS or AIDS-related conditions are faced with discrimination in employment, housing, business establishments, city facilities, city services, and other public accommodations. This discrimination poses a substantial threat to the health, safety, and welfare of the community. Existing state and federal restraints on such arbitrary discrimination are inadequate to meet the particular problems of this City and County.
(Added by Ord. 499-85, App. 11/20/85)