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International News

Canada: HIV-Positive People Should Always Tell Partner, Supreme Court Told

February 9, 2012

HIV treatment has not advanced enough that people with HIV/AIDS have no obligation to tell potential sex partners about their infection, the Supreme Court of Canada heard Wednesday.

"We're not there yet," Elizabeth Thomson, Crown attorney for Manitoba, told the nine justices. "The threat of HIV is not theoretical."

The Supreme Court is reviewing disclosure laws following cases in Quebec and Manitoba where two people with HIV were acquitted of criminal charges for not revealing their serostatus. A 1998 Supreme Court case ruled that those who hide their infection do not allow partners informed consent and expose them to "significant risk of serious bodily harm," even if no transmission occurs. As a result, people with HIV who do not disclose their serostatus can be criminally liable.

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See Also
Canada: Supreme Court to Decide Whether People With HIV Have to Tell Their Sex Partners
More on HIV in Canada

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