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Global Community, U.S. States Must Repeal HIV Criminalization Laws, Discriminatory Practices

STAT: To end HIV, discriminatory laws must be repealed
Chris Beyrer, professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

“…[P]lenty of work remains if we are to end the AIDS epidemic. … [W]e’re … being held back by harmful laws and policies that discourage people from getting tested, and so from getting the treatment they need. More than 30 states have laws that can be used to prosecute people living with HIV. … HIV criminalization isn’t limited to the United States. … In the last five years, countries ranging from Kenya and Panama to the Seychelles have taken steps to reverse HIV criminalization laws and discriminatory practices. Sadly, not much has changed in the United States, with many states’ criminalization laws still in place from decades ago. … Repealing or reforming these antiquated and harmful laws requires the same kind of bipartisan support and collaboration that allowed the Republican and Democratic leadership to create visionary HIV programs like the Ryan White CARE Act and the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). We have come together before to address HIV as a nation and a global community and we need to do so again…” (7/26).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.