Greece Reinstates Forced HIV Testing

Greece’s new minister of health has reinstated a measure that allows the police to detain and test any person for HIV.

Health organisations say the decree stigmatises drug users, sex workers and undocumented migrants in particular. The text also states that any occupants of housing which “may cause danger to public health” should be evicted from their homes, without any alternative being offered. The measure, which was first introduced by Socialist health minister Andreas Loverdos in April 2012 shortly before the general election, resulted in the round-up and subsequent forced testing of hundreds of women. The 17 found to be HIV positive had their names, personal details and photographs published in the media, on the grounds of protecting public health.

The measure has been denounced by Doctors Of The World and the Greece Solidarity Campaign.