Since 1998, 37 people have been charged with the crime
Nine Iowa inmates sit behind bars for a crime that advocates say should no longer be on the books.
The men have been convicted of criminal transmission of HIV, a Class B felony that carries a sentence of up to 25 years in prison.
A group known as CHAIN — for Community HIV & Hepatitis Advocates of Iowa Network — is working to repeal that law.
“A lot of people have no idea that the criminal transmission laws even exist,” said Virginia Tonelli, CHAIN’s advocacy coordinator. “It’s not uniformly applied; it’s not uniformly prosecuted. At the very least it needs to be reformed.”
According to CHAIN, the law undermines public health goals because it makes HIV-infected people less willing to get tested — you cannot be charged if you do not know your status — and less willing to disclose their HIV status to partners, out of fear of prosecution.
Complete article at The Gazette : http://bit.ly/qw8rhp