The World Health Organization said this week that nations should use changes in law to stop the spread of AIDS by removing obstacles to HIV prevention, Erasing 76 Crimes, a blog that reports on anti-gay laws around the world, reports.
Those laws limit health care access for groups that are most at risk for HIV infection, WHO stated — “key populations” that include men who have sex with men, sex workers, transgender people and drug users.
Those groups, along with prisoners, are “disproportionately affected by HIV in all countries and settings,” WHO stated in its report “Consolidated Guidelines on HIV Prevention, Diagnosis, Treatment and Care for Key Populations.”
Those groups are most affected by HIV and get the least attention from anti-AIDS programs, WHO noted.
The WHO report makes clear recommendations for the repeal of HIV-enabling laws:
• “Countries should work toward developing policies and laws that decriminalize same-sex behaviors.”
• “Countries should work toward developing policies and laws that decriminalize injection and other use of drugs and, thereby, reduce incarceration.”
• “Countries should work toward decriminalization of sex work and elimination of the unjust application of non-criminal laws and regulations against sex workers.”
• “Countries should work towards legal recognition for transgender people.”