Activists from Sydney-based Community Action Against Homophobia (CAAH) went to Melbourne to form a queer bloc for the November 18-19 G20 protests. The bloc called for money for AIDS care not war.
Queer identifying people conducted a banner drop from a third storey balcony opposite the state library. The large banner had four demands — free AIDS and health care not military spending, decriminalisation of sex work, same-sex education and an end to homophobic laws.
The bloc at helped mark the struggle to combat homophobia in the lead-up to planned APEC protests in Sydney in 2007, which queer activists will be mobilising for.
"It was a great awareness-raising exercise", said Rachel Evans, the National Union of Students' female queer officer. "It was a wake up call to the G20 from the queers to solve the AIDS crisis now. Nine out of 10 HIV sufferers don't have access to HIV drugs in South Africa. Without these drugs, HIV sufferers have a life span of two to five years."
Simon Biber, co-convenor of CAAH, said that "With the continued increase in the worlds AIDS epidemic CAAH will continue to be involved in the struggle of AIDS care to show the world we care!"
"Somehow the issue of AIDS-care talk is clinical", said Sayuri member of CAAH. "We can't talk about it socially because it's a bit embarrassing. You can't talk about it like you would cancer and I think we need to make it more open. The more we talk about it the more we de-stigmatise it, as the majority get it from sexually related activities ..."