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HIV/AIDS Blog Central

Catherine Hanssens, Esq.

HIV Law & Policy

AIDS Criminals and Innocent Victims: Is There Anything Wrong With This Picture?
September 29, 2009

On September 18th, ABC's "20/20" program aired a piece on five Texas women who slept with "HIV criminal" 53-year-old Philippe Padieu, convicted and sentenced to five concurrent 45-year sentences for infecting these women with HIV after failing to disclose his HIV status and having unprotected sex with them. I anticipated yet another sensationalized "expose'" pitting one or more unaware female victims against the evil person with HIV, narrated by a stunningly uninformed member of the media. Sad to say, I mostly got what I expected.

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Human Rights: When Officials Get Serious About HIV Prevention, This is Where They'll Start
August 31, 2009

Nearly three decades after the identification of the first cases of AIDS, our national dialogue continues to fail those living with HIV by failing to put human rights at the center of AIDS prevention and treatment.

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Community Engagement on HIV Policy: Are Town Halls Meaningful Enough?
August 25, 2009

This article is part of a special series this week focusing on HIV and AIDS in the United States. RH Reality Check is partnering with CHAMP, the AIDS Foundation of Chicago, the HIV Prevention Justice Alliance, and organizations such as the Center for HIV Law and Policy to highlight issues on domestic HIV and AIDS policy while several thousand people attend the National HIV Prevention Conference in Atlanta, Georgia.

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HIV Law & Policy

Catherine Hanssens has been active in HIV legal and policy issues since 1984. She is the executive director of the Center for HIV Law and Policy, the first national legal resource and strategy center for people with HIV and their advocates.

Previously, Hanssens lead the development of Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund's HIV litigation and policy work as the AIDS project director for eight years. During her earlier work with the AIDS Law Project of Pennsylvania, Hanssens created and managed a model on-site legal assistance program for single parents with HIV in Philadelphia-area hospitals and clinics that brought together legal, medical and social services.

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Articles by Catherine:

Lost in the Shuffle: Women's Right to Choose, Not Just Refuse, HIV Testing (March 4, 2009)

HIV and Young People: The Crisis Is Now (July 6, 2001)

For the rest of Catherine's articles, click here.

Interviews With Catherine:

This Month in HIV: Sex, Privacy and the Law When You're HIV Positive (October 2007)

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The opinions expressed by's bloggers are entirely their own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of itself.