Wisdom of Life

Breaking the Walls of Criminalization

There is an overwhelming body of information now to show how criminalization of same-sex sexual conduct among consenting adults hinders the provision of HIV/AIDS targeted prevention information and commodities.

Evidence from the Kenyan government’s own research shows that 15.2% of all new infections in Kenya are attributed to men having sex with men (MSM). Most resent research continues to paint a grim picture of the rising infection rates, currently standing at over 25% among the MSM – of course bearing in mind the usual trend of age and geographical disparities.

Recent research shows that over 40% of the MSM engage in opposite-sex relationships at some point. Removing these laws then is not just about the MSM but is also about public health interest, including the non-MSM population.

Retaining laws that lead to the exclusion of a significant section of the society from HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care makes a mockery of the whole National HIV/AIDS strategy because of the social and epidemiological inter-linkages of the Kenyan public. Regardless of how Kenyans perceive the MSM, these structural barriers are inimical to the entire population’s public health interest and their removal benefits the entire society.

This case study – Breaking the Wall of Criminalization – Business Case – outlines the facts stated above and the various implications of criminalization on HIV/AIDS transmission and treatment on the society