Trinidad and Tobago

Last reviewed 01 June 2017

Country overview

Specific law enacted

No

Specific law detail

Specific law criminalising HIV non disclosure, exposure, or transmission: No

Prosecuted using non-HIV specific laws: No

Prosecuted using both specific and non specific laws: No

Is non-disclosure actionable: No

Is exposure actionable: No

Is transmission actionable: No

Prosecution count

0

Conviction count

0

Discussion

A legislation proposal was brought to the Cabinet of the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago for the criminalisation of persons who knowingly transmit HIV to an HIV-negative person. However, as the proposal was incomplete it was rejected and referred for further formulation. (The first proposal was considered to be not clear about how the court could prove the guilt.)

In 2000, the Trinidad and Tobago Law Commission decided against introducing laws that would criminalise HIV exposure or transmission for the following reasons: creating a criminal offence might create a false sense of security “whereas individuals need to be responsible and protect themselves”; in countries where HIV-specific laws have been introduced “they have rarely been used and have often been harshly criticised”; legislation enacted “in reaction to a public demand for action, can be counterproductive because it diverts attention from underlying problems by creating the impression that decisive action is being taken while hindering the implementation of constructive solutions”; “proof and enforcement of this type of law can be difficult”; and prosecuting only people who know their status may discourage HIV testing[1].


[1]Taylor-Bassoo C Law cannot prevent HIV. AIDS Window 1, 2000

Specific laws

Specific law enacted No

Specific law criminalising HIV non disclosure, exposure, or transmission: No

Prosecuted using non-HIV specific laws: No

Prosecuted using both specific and non specific laws: No

Is non-disclosure actionable: No

Is exposure actionable: No

Is transmission actionable: No

Prosecutions

Number of prosecutions 0

Convictions

Number of convictions 0

Laws

Applicable laws

There is no specific law. Law proposal is under review. See below.

Discussion

A legislation proposal was brought to the Cabinet of the Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago for the criminalisation of persons who knowingly transmit HIV to an HIV-negative person. However, as the proposal was incomplete it was rejected and referred for further formulation. (The first proposal was considered to be not clear about how the court could prove the guilt.)

In 2000, the Trinidad and Tobago Law Commission decided against introducing laws that would criminalise HIV exposure or transmission for the following reasons: creating a criminal offence might create a false sense of security “whereas individuals need to be responsible and protect themselves”; in countries where HIV-specific laws have been introduced “they have rarely been used and have often been harshly criticised”; legislation enacted “in reaction to a public demand for action, can be counterproductive because it diverts attention from underlying problems by creating the impression that decisive action is being taken while hindering the implementation of constructive solutions”; “proof and enforcement of this type of law can be difficult”; and prosecuting only people who know their status may discourage HIV testing[1].


[1]Taylor-Bassoo C Law cannot prevent HIV. AIDS Window 1, 2000

Last reviewed 01 June 2017

Overview

Entry laws

There are no specific entry or residence regulations for people with HIV/AIDS. Neither a medical certificate nor an HIV test result is required when entering the country. Foreigners with a known HIV infection are not subject to specific residence regulations.

There are no regulations regarding the control, deportation or expulsion of those concerned.

Antiretroviral medication can be imported for personal use. A doctor’s prescription should be carried.

Due to the lack of legal regulations, discriminatory practices and HIV testing cannot be entirely excluded especially in the case of long term stays.

For updated information, please go to: www.hivrestrictions.org

Last reviewed 01 June 2017

Last reviewed 01 June 2017