Yes, Drug Laws Absolutely Hurt HIV Prevention and Treatment

NewsWeek, 17 May 2017
Author: Jessica Wapner
“When it comes to HIV risk factors, IV drug use is catching up to sex. Among people who inject drugs, an estimated 13 percent have HIV. About 30 percent of new infections outside of sub-Saharan Africa are the result of sticking dirty needles into vulnerable veins. In 2014, more than half of new HIV infections in Eastern Europe and central Asia were due to drugs. In the Middle East and northern Africa, nearly one-third of infections occurred by this route. A newly published report in Lancet HIV confirms the long-suspected assertion that the war on drugs is only making matters worse. The study provides concrete evidence that drug laws are harmful to preventing and treating HIV.”
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National guidelines oppose push to allow parents to choose sex of IVF babies

SMH, 20 April 2017
Author: Kate Aubusson
“Australia’s peak medical council has knocked back a push to allow parents to choose the gender of their baby in new national guidelines. On Thursday, the NHMRC banned clinics from offering gender selection for non-medical purposes in its long-anticipated guidelines for assisted reproductive technologies (ART). But the National Health and Medical Research Council left the door open for future changes, suggesting sex selection may be ethical.”
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Las Vegas’ HIV prevention initiatives include installing syringe vending machines

FoxNews, 18 April 2017
Author: Andrew O’Reilly
“Inspired by successes in places like Europe and Australia, Trac-B Exchange, the Southern Nevada Health District and the Nevada AIDS Research and Education Society are set to begin a pilot program that will install three syringe-dispensing vending machines across Las Vegas in the hope of reducing drug users’ needle sharing. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention assert that needle exchange programs are effective in preventing the spread of disease.”
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Treat HIV as a public health matter, not a criminal one

Sfchronicle, 20 March 2017
Author: The San Francisco Chronicle
“Treatment of HIV, the virus that leads to AIDS, has grown by leaps and bounds since the epidemic was at its height in the late 1980s and early 1990s. It’s time for our state law regarding the disease to evolve, too. A bill, SB239, has been introduced that would reduce these penalties to the status of a misdemeanor. The idea is to reduce the stigma and public health problems around HIV by treating it the same way, legally, as other communicable diseases.”
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California Lawmakers Hold LGBT Caucus Briefing on Bill that Would Decriminalize HIV

ECT, 10 March 2017
Source: ECT
“On Thursday, the LGBT Caucus held a briefing on the decriminalizing HIV and SB 239. The controversial bill, Senate Bill 239, introduced in early February, would repeal laws passed more than three-decades ago that Wiener and supporters say are discriminatory and not based in science. The proposed bill would treat HIV like other communicable diseases under California Law. According to the proposed bill, it would make it a misdemeanor instead of a felony to intentionally expose someone to HIV.”
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How Same-Sex Marriage Laws Help LGBTQ Teens

HealthLine, 28 February 2017
Author: Gigen Mammoser
“Suicide is the second leading cause of death for people between the ages of 15 and 24 in the United States. However, adolescents who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender are at even greater risk of self-harm. According to a new study published in JAMA Pediatrics, same-sex marriage legalization leads to an overall decrease in adolescent suicide attempts.”
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Doctors Want To Learn More About Treating Transgender Patients, Survey Shows

Huffington Post, 12 January 2017
Author: Anna Almendrala
“One in three transgender patients reports experiencing serious discrimination or bias when seeking medical care, even when that care is unrelated to their transgender status. While some of these negative interactions in health care may stem from discriminatory attitudes on the part of medical care professionals, a survey reveals that doctors feel they lack the training they need to feel confident when treating transgender patients.”
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Federal judge halts transgender health protections

The Hill, 31 December 2017
Author: Mallory Shelbourne
“A federal judge in Texas on Saturday halted enforcement of federal rules aimed at preventing doctors from discriminating against transgender individuals. U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor granted the temporary injunction, saying the rules “likely violate” the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, according to The Associated Press.”
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