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Truvada – the other little blue pill

Not every gay man in Australia is having more sex than you or me, but it’s a fair bet that Scott is. Scott, who wants to be known by his first name only, lives in Sydney, where he works as an accountant. He is 52 years old, single and travels a lot. Recently he went to Berlin for the Folsom leather festival, an annual street fair that has become the biggest gay fetish event in Europe. The festival features leather bars and fetish clubs and plenty of sex parties, where, as Scott says, “everyone is up and ready for it. It’s just really relaxed and casual, and quite collegiate.”

1417065964235 450x252 Truvada – the other little blue pill

Despite having between 12 and 15 sexual encounters in Berlin over five days, Scott only used condoms “on and off”. “You make a value judgment based on the person and the situation, just like you would here,” he says. Yet he wasn’t worried about getting HIV, thanks to a little blue pill called Truvada, which he took every day. “It was great,” he says. “It just took away some of the fear that you always have about sex if you’re a gay man, that spectre of HIV that is always in the back of your mind.”

Truvada is the world’s first oral HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis. Just as the contraceptive pill stops women getting pregnant, Truvada stops you getting HIV. Clinical trials have shown that it reduces the chance of contracting the virus by up to 97 per cent. A combination of two drugs, emtricitabine and tenofovir, Truvada has been around since 2004, when it was released by US manufacturer Gilead Sciences as a treatment for people already infected with HIV. Used in combination with other anti-retrovirals, Truvada can lower an HIV-positive person’s viral load (the amount of virus in their blood stream) to undetectable levels, making them, for all intents and purposes, non-infectious.

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Arizona Activist Monica Jones Convicted of ‘Walking While Trans’ Will Appeal

Attorneys for sex workers’ rights activist Monica Jones are scheduled to argue in court Monday that the Phoenix antiprostitution ordinance under which Jones was convicted is unconstitutionally vague and infringes on free-speech rights, reports the Associated Press.

In April, Jones was found guilty of “manifesting prostitution” after she accepted a ride from an undercover Phoenix police officer during a May 2013 antiprostitution sting. She was sentenced to 30 days in jail. Her attorneys are seeking to have Jones’s conviction overturned and the antiprostitution statute struck down.

Monica Jonesjpg 350x262 Arizona Activist Monica Jones Convicted of Walking While Trans Will Appeal

The fact that Jones, a 29-year-old black trans woman who attends Arizona State University and volunteers with the Sex Workers Outreach Project, is not herself a sex worker led many advocates to declare that the true “crime” she was convicted of was “walking while trans.”

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Extra, Extra: Woman Stabs Boyfriend For Starting Thanksgiving Dinner Without Her

Extra, Extra: Woman Stabs Boyfriend For Starting Thanksgiving Dinner Without Her Because you’ve never been stabbed on Thanksgiving, check out today’s end-of-day links: exploding stove, telling on Internet trolls, parks don’t want deer, Martha Stewart Thanksgiving, and baby bat burritos. Don’t forget to follow Gothamist on Twitter and like us on Facebook. You can also get the top stories mailed to you—sign up here. [ more › ]

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