Issues we work on

Read more about the policy areas we work on in this area

NAT Topic - Criminalisation

Criminalisation of HIV

Criminalisation of HIV

The issue: 

Since 2001, there have been prosecutions for the reckless transmission of HIV in the UK. However, this has not reduced HIV transmission. Instead, it has undermined public health by increasing stigma, victimisation and discrimination of people living with HIV. Investigations are often long and protracted and spark stigmatising media coverage.  

What we do: 

National AIDS Trust influences legal and policy developments, police and prosecutor practice and the way the media talks about criminalisation of HIV transmission. We strive to limit the detrimental impact of prosecutions. We do this by working with the police, Crown Prosecution Service and the media. We monitor prosecutions and intervene on a case-by-case basis, ensuring that people living with HIV are treated fairly within the criminal justice system. For those researching this issue we have also compiled a table of all known prosecutions which is available on request.


Yusef Azad
Last month newspapers reported the trial and conviction of a man who had gone berserk in a Manchester hotel, during...
Sarah Radcliffe
On 11 November the Mirror published an article online called 'The Hollywood actor with HIV deserves everything he gets –...
Suzi Price
There have been a number of reports of on an HIV criminalisation case in the media this week, describing the...

Press Releases

National AIDS Trust, Terrence Higgins Trust (THT) and The Love Tank are backing the wide...
Following the announcement today from Police Scotland, spearheaded by HIV Scotland , we want to...
Kat Smithson, Director of Policy and Campaigns at NAT (National AIDS Trust) said: “The Rowe...


HIV perspective on the ‘Nordic’ or ‘end-demand’ model
Briefing paper from National AIDS Trust, Terrence Higgins Trust and The Love Tank, April 2021...
Investigation Guidance relating to the Criminal Transmission of HIV
Prosecutions for Criminal Transmission of HIV and other STIs: Table of Cases

Real Stories

"The police questioned me about an infected girl." Sunday night I was in bed having...

Teachers' Resources

Angels in America (Theatre Play)
NAT, Headlong Theatre and the Lyric Hammersmith have produced an education pack for schools exploring...