The Fine Print Blog

Catherine Hanssens
Executive Director/Founder
For Zero Discrimination Day, CHLP joins UNAIDS in highlighting the need for action against discriminatory laws and policies, and challenging people to get involved in changing the laws where they live. Eliminating the stigma of HIV and those living with it is as important to basic quality of life as antiretrovirals and it’s one of the reasons why ending HIV nationally and internationally can't be done without criminal law reform.
Catherine Hanssens
Founder/Executive Director
A new blog from CHLP Executive Director Catherine Hanssens argues that theories of “trickle-down justice” in state HIV criminal law reform are a rationalization for leaving behind those most affected: sex workers and women.
Kate Boulton
Staff Attorney, The Center for HIV Law and Policy
Today, there is a growing movement of organizations and advocates across the country committed to seeing the end of HIV criminalization. While we can all agree that there needs to be change, a more urgent question may be how we’re defining the success of that change. What underlying principles are guiding this work?
Arpita Appannagari
National Community Outreach Coordinator, The Center for HIV Law and Policy
A memo from the Trump Administration’s Department of Health and Human Services said it intended to use Title IX to define gender “on a biological basis that is clear, grounded in science, objective and administrable." The proposal is a bare-knuckled assault on the civil rights and safety of people who identify as outside of the gender binary. It is an act of violence with very real and serious consequences for the health, healthcare, and related safety of individual young people.
Arpita Appannagari and Kate Boulton
While science is one useful tool in combating HIV criminalization, we must avoid the suggestion that these discriminatory laws have any kind of underlying legitimacy. In the context of the newly released "Expert consensus statement on the science of HIV in the context of criminal law," which concludes that “a correct and complete understanding of current scientific knowledge” must “inform any application of the criminal law in cases related to HIV,” is a dispassionate scientific analysis summarizing what we already know, without situating that analysis within a broader social justice framework, and falls short of fostering change on its own.

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