Having Unprotected Sex Without Sharing HIV-Positive Status Could No Longer Be A Felony


A newly proposed bill states it should no longer be a felony to knowingly expose others to HIV/AIDS by engaging in unprotected sex and not telling the partner about the infection. Democratic Sen. Scott Wiener from San Francisco and other state lawmakers would make such acts a misdemeanor, a proposal that has been challenged by Republicans. Under the current law, those convicted can be sentenced up to seven years in prison.

The same would apply to those donating blood or semen who choose not to inform they have acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, or AIDS, or have tested positive for human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV, the precursor to AIDS.

“HIV-related stigma is one of our main obstacles to reducing and ultimately eliminating infections,” Sen. Wiener said. “When you criminalize HIV or stigmatize people who have HIV it encourages people not to get tested, to stay in the shadows, not to be open about their status, not to seek treatment.”

Although modern treatments are highly effective, the current laws deter people from getting tested for HIV and seeking treatment, Wiener said.

“These laws were passed at the height of the HIV/AIDS epidemic when there was enormous fear and ignorance and misinformation around HIV,” Wiener said. “It’s time for California to lead and to repeal these laws to send a clear signal that we are going to take a science-based approach to HIV not a fear-based approach.”

For more on this developing story, see here.

@Robinrazzi


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Robin is a digital content creator and has worked in the digital space for nearly ten years. “Robinrazzi” is a nickname given from a former colleague and is a perfect integration of her name and one of her greatest hobbies of having a camera in hand to capture once in a lifetime moments like paparazzi. She has traveled the world covering entertainment, celebrities, events and anything trending. She holds a BA in communications from Penn State and MS in marketing from Johns Hopkins University. She currently serves as Digital Content Manager for WHUR and the Howard University Radio Network.

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