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Story 1

Canada issues new non-disclosure of HIV laws

CANADA – Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network has welcomed new moves issued by the federal government, to limit what it calls unjust prosecutions of people with HIV.

Canada’s minister of Justice and attorney general, issued the new directives on Saturday, the 30th anniversary of World Aids Day.

Over-criminalization of HIV non-disclosure discourages many individuals from being tested and seeking treatment.

The federal Justice Department has been working with its provincial counterparts since 2016 to redraft directives around prosecution over HIV non-disclosure.

The new directives state that there should not be prosecution where the person living with HIV has maintained a suppressed viral load because there is no realistic possibility of transmission.


Story 2

The Gay and Lesbian network objects to clause in Civil Union Act

UNION – The gay and lesbian network, although welcoming the amendment to South Africa’s Civil union act, are objecting to the transitional Provision stated in it.

In a recent press release they state “We however object to the new clause on “Transition Provision” that any exemption granted by the Minister in terms of section 6 of the Act, prior to the commencement of this Act, laspses 24 months from the date of the commencement of this Act.

The main aim of the amendment is to do away with discrimination.

But this provision allows discrimination of same sex couples to continue for the next 24 months.

The Gay and Lesbian Network is urging the government to not to approve the amendment as is and to immediately enforce the Home Affairs marriage officers to immediately cease the discrimination.


Story 3

Transgender student bullied in bathroom by teachers

STUDENT – A transgender girl in Minnesota has posted a horrifying video that appears to show Senior High School staff breaking into a bathroom stall while she was using the toilet.

Transgender teen Cece, who attends Osseo Senior High School in Maple Grove, Minnesota, posted two clips to Facebook of an incident in a women’s bathroom.

In the clip, the student is on the toilet with their trousers down while several adults, reportedly members of staff at the school, attempt to break into the locked stall.

The context of the clip could not be confirmed.

In a statement to CBS Minnesota, a spokesperson for the school claimed the video is “significantly misrepresenting the incident” but declined to give any alternate account of events.


Story 4

Pakistan opens first ward to offer separate treatment for transgender patients

WARD – A specialist hospital ward to offer treatment for transgender patients has opened in Pakistan.

The ward in capital city Islamabad will offer members of the transgender community free treatment with specialist doctors focussing on the treatment of transgender patients.

The ward’s inauguration follows a High Court ruling that public hospitals in Punjab province must provide separate facilities for transgender patients.

The court’s ruling came about due to the difficulties faced by members of Pakistan’s transgender community when they were seeking healthcare treatment.

Although this year has seen progress for transgender rights in Pakistan, trans-phobic discrimination and violence remain rampant in the country.


Story 5

Tublr announces removal of all adult content

TUMBLR – Social media site Tumblr has announced that it will begin to remove all adult and Not safe for work content from 17 December.

Tumblr recently saw itself removed from the Apple IoS app store after a child porn incident.

The site responded by saying that all content is scanned by filters to remove potential child porn.

However, some had slipped through the net – leading to the problems with the app store.

The announcement makes it clear that Tumblr – owned by Yahoo since 2013 – has decided now is the time to overhaul its services.