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December 2018                                                                          View this email in your browser 
HIV Justice Worldwide - December 2018


 

This week we were delighted to be amongst the 24 networks and corsortia included in the 2019-21 funding round of the Robert Carr Fund for Civil Society Networks.

HIV JUSTICE WORLDWIDE (and HIV Justice Network) would not exist were it not for the Robert Carr Fund.

But, as we noted in the title of our AIDS 2018 poster, Aristotle was right – the sum is greater than the whole of its parts: How collaboration increased capacity in the fight against HIV criminalisation.
 
We wouldn't be able to do what we do without funding – nor could we do it without you!

With this funding - an increase of 40% from our previous grant - we are now able to build and expand upon the remarkable work we have done together during the past three years.

We look forward to collaborating with many of you in 2019 and beyond because only by working together is it possible to make HIV JUSTICE WORLDWIDE a reality.

 

In solidarity, 





 
Edwin J Bernard
Global Co-ordinator, HIV Justice Network / HIV JUSTICE WORLDWIDE

 
Top Stories
HIV JUSTICE TOOLKIT now available in French
December 10, 2018 


With this week's publication of the French version of HIV JUSTICE WORLDWIDE’s Advocacy Toolkit, French-speaking lawyers and activists fighting unjust and outdated HIV criminalisation in Francophone countries around the world now have an indispensable new resource.

The Toolkit, available at: http://toolkit.hivjusticeworldwide.org/fr/ aims to support stakeholders in their work against HIV criminalisation at all levels, whether educating community or legislators or for the individual defense of criminal cases.Designed by the HIV Justice Network (HJN) and developed with the invaluable help and assistance of members of the HIV JUSTICE WORLDWIDE French-speaking network, the Toolkit was funded by a grant from the Robert Carr Fund.  
More →


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Kenya: Positive Justice Campaign launched today to challenge unjust HIV-Specific Law
December 10, 2018


On December 10, International Human Rights Day, the National Empowerment Network of People living with HIV/AIDS in Kenya (NEPHAK) and the Kenya Legal and Ethical Issues Network on HIV and AIDS (KELIN) have launched the Positive Justice campaign to finally end HIV criminalisation in Kenya.

However, Section 26 of the Sexual Offences Act (2006) still contains vague and overly broad provisions that have resulted in a number of recent arrests and unjust prosecutions for biting (March 2018), breastfeeding (September 2018), and alleged non-disclosure (December 2018).

More →

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Attorney General of Canada issues Directive Regarding Prosecutions of HIV Non-Disclosure Cases
December 1, 2018

The Government of Canada is committed to a fair, responsive and effective criminal justice system that protects Canadians, holds offenders to account, supports vulnerable people, and respects the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Today, on the 30thanniversary of World AIDS Day, the Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, announced that she will issue a directive related to the prosecution of HIV non-disclosure cases under the federal jurisdiction of the Public Prosecution Service of Canada.

In issuing the Directive, the Government of Canada recognizes the over-criminalization of HIV non-disclosure discourages many individuals from being tested and seeking treatment, and further stigmatizes those living with HIV or AIDS.

More →


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Tajikistan: Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) recommends repeal of HIV criminalisation law
November 13, 2018

In a key moment for the entire EECA region, the 71st Session of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) has recommended that Tajikistan:

(e) Decriminalise[s] HIV/AIDS transmission (article 125 of the Criminal Code) and repeal[s] the Government decrees of 25 September 2018 and 1 October 2004, prohibiting HIV-positive women from pursuing a medical degree, adopting a child or being a legal guardian.

Congratulations to the women living with HIV from Tajikistan who presented their alternative report to the Committee last week, prepared with the support of HIV JUSTICE WORLDWIDE’s EECA ‘hub’, the Eurasian Women’s Network on AIDS (EWNA) with technical support from our Steering Committee member, the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network.

The full text of the CEDAW recommendations can be found here http://www.ewna.org/…/…/2018/11/CEDAW_C_TJK_CO_6_29757_E.pdf

The full text of their alternative report can be found here: https://tbinternet.ohchr.org/…/INT_CEDAW_NGO_TJK_31230_E.pdf

Available now! All four HIV JUSTICE WORLDWIDE Regional HIV Criminalisation Reports: http://www.hivjusticeworldwide.org/en/regionalreports/
HIV JUSTICE WORLDWIDE
Steering Committee Member Updates
Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network
Moving to End unjust HIV Prosecutions 
Human rights advocates welcome historic announcement by federal government

The following statement is issued by the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network (“Legal Network”). Comments can be attributed to Richard Elliott, Executive Director, Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network.


December 1, 2018 — Today, on World AIDS Day, federal Attorney General Jody Wilson-Raybould announced a new directive to help limit unjust prosecutions against people living with HIV in Canada. This new directive, which comes after years of advocacy by the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network and many partner organizations, is consistent with Justice Canada’s own recommendations and a welcome step in the ongoing effort to the end the criminalization of HIV. It is also better aligned with the latest scientific evidence regarding HIV and its transmission.

Last year, the Canadian Coalition to Reform HIV Criminalization (CCRHC), of which we are a founding member, released its Community Consensus Statement, signed by more than 160 organizations Canada-wide. In this statement, we detailed key steps that the federal, provincial and territorial governments must take in order to curb the overly broad use of criminal law against people living with HIV. Yesterday, the CCRHC issued a follow-up statement in which more than 100 organizations called on the federal government to act on its stated concerns about “overcriminalization of HIV” and the conclusions of a Justice Canada report released a year ago. Scientists have also repeatedly called on federal and provincial governments to heed the science and limit prosecutions accordingly.

We are pleased that the government has listened to our collective voice and taken much-needed action today. We congratulate the Attorney General for this welcome and important step.

We note that this directive only governs federal prosecutors, who handle such criminal prosecutions only in Canada’s three territories. We therefore continue to call on provincial Attorneys General to follow the federal government lead and issue similar directives limiting prosecutions against people living with HIV in their jurisdictions. At this time, no province has yet issued clear directives reflecting these limits on the misuse of the criminal law. Unjust prosecutions – and the fear of such prosecution – continue. We also continue to call on the Government of Canada to enact Criminal Code reforms that remove HIV non-disclosure prosecutions entirely from the reach of sexual assault laws.

Contact:

Richard Elliott, Executive Director Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network 416 898 3313, relliott[at]aidslaw.ca

 


Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+)

Launch of the Global Partnership For Action to Eliminate all Forms of HIV-related Stigma and Discrimination
December 10, 2018 - From GNP+

The Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+) in collaboration with UNAIDSUNDPUN Women and the UNAIDS PCB NGO Delegation is pleased to announce the launch of the Global Partnership for Action to Eliminate all Forms of HIV-related Stigma and Discrimination (Global Partnership).

The launch event took place on 10 December, Human Rights Day, at the UNAIDS Building Foyer in Geneva Switzerland was broadcast live online on the UNAIDS Facebook page.

Across communities and borders, stigma and discrimination continues to be the number one issue identified by people living with HIV as a concern. Stigma remains a major barrier to accessing treatment and care, to adhering to treatment and to living a high quality life. Discrimination places people living with HIV and key populations in danger in their day-to-day lives by destroying families and communities, causing economic hardship and violating basic human rights.

The Global Partnership for Action to Eliminate All Forms of HIV-related Stigma and Discrimination aims to catalyze and accelerate implementation of commitments established in the 2016 Political Declaration and made to end HIV-related stigma and discrimination by Member States, UN agencies, bilateral and international donors, NGOs and communities as essential for ending AIDS as part of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. The aim of the work is to maximize the reach and impact of HIV prevention, treatment, testing and treatment programmes in countries by eliminating HIV-related stigma and discrimination in key settings in the context of urgent efforts to FastTrack the achievement of the 2020 targets. The global partnership’s goal is to reach zero HIV-related stigma and discrimination.

“As we usher in a new year, the HIV community must recommit and redouble our efforts to fighting HIV-related stigma and discrimination, in tandem with addressing racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, gender based violence and other prejudices that fuel the worldwide HIV epidemic”,  says Javier Hourcade Bellocq, GNP+ Board Chair.  “GNP+ is pleased to be a co-convenor of this critical and ground-breaking Global Partnership that seeks to transform our communities best strategies, tactics and mechanisms for addressing and measuring HIV-related stigma and discrimination into actionable and accountable global targets and goals for Member States.”

All countries and partners committed with the HIV response and human rights principles are encouraged to join the global partnership and use their collective strength to eliminate HIV-related stigma and discrimination. For more information about ways that you can get involved in this important initiative please visit www.gnpplus.net

HIV Criminalisation News from Around the World

US: Missouri lawmakers and health professionals call for a reform of scientifically outdated HIV criminalisation laws
December 2, 2018 - From Fox 2
Lawmakers, health officials push Missouri HIV law rewrite

Zimbabwe: Calls to repeal law on HIV transmission and non-disclosure as it is not supported by scientific evidence.
December 2, 2018 - From Daily News
Repeal law on transmission of HIV

Uganda: New efforts underway in Uganda to challenge HIV legislation, especially its provisions on the disclosure of HIV status.
November 21, 2018 - From World News
New effort against HIV/AIDS law

US: Michigan Department of Corrections agrees to amend policies that allowed disproportionate punishment of incarcerated people living with HIV.
November 6, 2018 - From Metro Weekly
Michigan Department of Corrections agrees to amend policies that dole out harsher punishments to HIV–positive prisoners
 
Australia: Community advocates call for decriminalisation of HIV and an implementation of U=U education campaign to remove stigma
November 2, 2018 - From Out in Perth
Calls for review of Western Australia’s HIV Laws

Global: Update of global database on HIV specific travel and residence restrictions shows 49 countries restrict long-term stays and 13 have punitive laws.
October 25, 2018   - From EATG
HIV Travel: The Global Database on HIV–specific Travel and Residence restrictions is updated

US: US: New report by the Williams Institute shows clear disparities in enforcement of HIV criminalization laws in Florida
October 14, 2018 - From Baltimore Outloud

Latest HIV Criminalisation Cases

Kenya
Mombasa man living with HIV arrested and charged for having sex while being aware of his status
Mombasa man in trouble for intentionally infecting lady with HIV/AIDS
December 5, 2018

US
Man living with HIV charged with trying to transmit HIV with body fluid in Illinois for biting police officer
Man Charged With Trying to Give Police Officer HIV by Biting Him
December 2, 2018

Russia
37-year-old man facing up to 8 years in jail in Ufa for alleged HIV infection
https://ufa1.ru/text/criminal/65684021
November 30, 2018

 
Canada
Male sex worker charged with aggravated sexual assault for alleged HIV non disclosure
Police charge 28–year–old with aggravated sexual assault
November 29, 2018

 
Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan: Man living with HIV taken into custody in Astana for alleged HIV infection
Астанчанина подозревают в намеренном заражении ВИЧ трех человек
November 27, 2018

 
Uganda
26-year-old housemaid arrested and charged for allegedly breastfeeding her employer’s baby
Housemaid living with HIV remanded over allegations of breast–feeding baby
November 26, 2018

 
Canada
Man living with HIV sent to jail for 3.5 years for failing to disclose his status despite using a condom
HIV–positive man going to penitentiary for aggravated sex assaults
November 24, 2018
 
Since October 6, 2018, there have been 23 reported cases from around the world.
If you know of others, please contact 
info@hivjustice.net
 
 
                                                        
                 
     

                                        
       


 



Supported by a grant from the Robert Carr civil society Networks Fund.
This newsletter is produced by the HIV Justice Network on behalf of HIV JUSTICE WORLDWIDE.

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