Statement on HIV Decriminalization

The Orange County Young Democrats (OCYD) endorse Senate Bill 239 (SB 239), which modernizes outdated laws pertaining to HIV.

California’s existing laws criminalizing HIV were passed in the 1980s—a time when little was known or understood about the virus and the disease. It is time that our laws take into account the latest understanding and treatments for HIV and no longer single out HIV from other serious infectious diseases.

While current law discourages individuals from getting tested and seeking treatment, SB 239 seeks to reduce the stigma surrounding HIV, advance good public health policy, and save lives.

The Orange County Young Democrats urge the California State Assembly to pass SB 239, which will modernize California’s laws regarding HIV, address the associated stigma, and ensure that California law treats people living with HIV the same as people with any other serious infectious disease.