Mark S. Bonham Centre for
Sexual Diversity Studies

SexText: The SDS Blog

HIV Criminalization in Canada

In Canada, it is illegal for HIV-positive people to have sex without disclosing their status, in some cases even if they use a condom and even if no one gets infected. Canada is now one of the top 10 countries in the world for arrests and prosecutions of HIV-positive people per capita, and its 48,000 HIV-positive residents are in a state of threat and confusion. To date, 146 people have been charged. A 2012 Supreme Court decision affirmed laws against nondisclosure. (In the United States, 34 out of 50 states have some law against people with HIV, criminalizing behaviors from nondisclosure to spitting, but no state case has made it to the U.S. Supreme Court and there is no federal standard.)

Bonham Centre Fellow, Sarah Schulman’s most recent article “Canada’s Vicious HIV Laws: How the Supreme Court Redefined Safe Sex” has been published in Slate. Read the full text here

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