Crime and Punishment: Is There a Role for Criminal Law in HIV Prevention Policy?
The Until There's A Cure Foundation has provided financial support for the UCSF AIDS Policy Research Center since 1998. One of the primary goals of this funding is to research and publish a monograph analyzing an area of current HIV/AIDS public policy. Previous monographs have focused on the development an AIDS vaccine and the validity of abstinence-only education. This year’s project, funded by Until There's A Cure Foundation, explores what role, if any, criminal law should have in addressing HIV transmission and what the scope of that role should be. This monograph reviews the criminal law approach to HIV transmission, including the history and policy background to criminalization of intentional HIV exposure and the reasons that states may use such laws. It then analyzes in detail the statutes that states have adopted to criminalize intentional HIV exposure, focusing on the specific statutory and its implications to highlight how criminal HIV exposure laws can support or undermine public health prevention efforts.