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Sex workers want HIV prevention Bill revised

By Vision Reporter

Added 14th December 2010 03:00 AM

SEX workers yesterday petitioned Parliament over the HIV Prevention and Control Bill, which they said promotes discrimination and violates human rights.

SEX workers yesterday petitioned Parliament over the HIV Prevention and Control Bill, which they said promotes discrimination and violates human rights.

By Madinah Tebajjukira

SEX workers yesterday petitioned Parliament over the HIV Prevention and Control Bill, which they said promotes discrimination and violates human rights.

Through their body, the Women’s Organisation Network for Human Rights Advocacy (WONETHA), the workers demanded that some clauses of the Bill, which seeks to contain the spread of HIV/AIDS in Uganda, be revised.

The sex workers urged Parliament to review the clauses on mandatory testing, disclosure of a person’s HIV status and the criminalisation of intentional spread of the disease.

They were led by their executive director, Macklean Kyomya.

The sex workers argued that if enacted, the Bill would discriminate against them with respect to HIV prevention and care.

The HIV Prevention and Control Bill 2010, which is being reviewed and discussed by the parliamentary committee on HIV/AIDS, requires mandatory disclosure of one’s HIV status to their sexual partners.

It also gives medical doctors power to disclose HIV-positive patients’ status to people who are in close contact with them if there is risk of infection.

The Bill adds that any person who transmits HIV knowingly commits an offence and is liable to five years imprisonment.

Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have continuously opposed the clauses, saying that if not reviewed, they pose a threat to the rights of people living with HIV/AIDS, especially women and children.

The NGOs argue that the mandatory disclosure of one’s HIV status threatens women with increased domestic violence and abuse.


Sex workers want HIV prevention Bill revised

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