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Cambridge Ordinance Requires Condom Vending Machines To Curb AIDS Rate

December 17, 1990

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) _ A condom vending machine once marked a bar or restaurant as being raffish, if not downright seedy. No more, at least not in Cambridge.

Under a new law, virtually all public businesses in this college town are being asked to install condom vending machines before next November. City officials planned to kick off the new ordinance today at a restaurant, the Green Street Grill, that is becoming the first to publicly install one of the dispensers.

The law, passed Nov. 5 as an anti-AIDS measure, requires all hotels, motels, restaurants, bars, movie theaters, health facilities and municipal buildings to install the machines. Schools are exempted, as is any other establishment that objects to the requirement.

″We are not going to be condom cops, but we are encouraging people to take the law seriously and put in machines,″ said Jennifer Wolfrum, community health coordinator for the city. ″Those not wanting to install machines don’t have to.″

Wolfrum said more than 100 residents have been diagnosed with AIDS over a 9 1/2 -year period. She said 60 percent of those people have died. She said that from 1,000 to 3,000 Cambridge residents are infected with the HIV virus.

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