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Posts Tagged ‘HIV discrimination’

 We’d all like to think that institutionalized discrimination against people with HIV was a thing of the past, but unfortunately it still exits.
 Just last week, the Milton Hershey School in Pennsylvania turned down the application of a 13-year-old honor student from Philadelphia because he is HIV-positive.
The stance, which is the subject of a federal civil lawsuit filed Wednesday, quickly drew national attention to the private residential school as both sides prepared for a court fight.
The school is standing behind a decision to refuse admission to a 13-year-old because he has HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, on the grounds that admitting the teen would pose a direct threat to the school’s 1,800 other students.

Specifically, school officials say that while it is not condoned, there is no way to stop their students from having sex with each other. And because students do have sex, admitting a child with HIV would constitute a “direct threat” to other students.

Milton Hershey School
Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, the school could be allowed to reject the student’s admission on that basis.

However HIV and AIDS attorneys reject that argument, pointing to court decisions regarding other institutional settings, like foster care or youth detention facilities — where the possibility of sexual contact also exists — that have determined that merely carrying HIV does not make a person a direct threat to others.

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