Monday, September 23, 2013

Switzerland Enacts A Radical New Law For HIV Transmission

So the Swiss are at it again joining the lead to challenge one of the oldest stigmatizing and discriminating instruments  of law in existence across the world.

HIV was announced to the world as a morality disease; a sickness that is a punishment for immorality and worse still, for homosexuality. Although we have come a long way away from that ignorance, the appalling thing is that most sovereign countries still uphold some nasty laws that beggars belief.

So Switzerland's step to enact a new law that will put an end to the many years of discrimination in penal cases against people living HIV; is greatly fundamental. It sets a new tone in the perspective of HIV which has always been a hurdle to ending the epidemic.

This new law therefore will lead to every adult taking a responsibility in preventing the transmission of HIV as it lifts the burden of sole responsibility from the person living with HIV in consenting interactions.
Under the new law called the Epidemics Acts, the transmission of a dangerous human disease is only prosecutable if the perpetrator acted with malicious intent; i.e. in rape or other such non-consenting interactions.

People living with HIV in Switzerland and of course, across the world will welcome this step with glee. Many atimes, they have watched with sorrow and fear while one of their likes are summarily pronounced guilty even when they had informed their partner of their HIV status. It has always been lopsided that the so-called victim in most of those cases were freed of any responsibility even if they had encouraged unsafe intercourse or exchange of needles.

This law will increase reduction in infection and encourage more practicing of safer sex as well as needle sharing amongst injecting drug users.

It is not time for other countries to adopt the same laws especially in those where discriminatory laws already exists.

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