Alabama To Allow Inmates With HIV To Participate In Work Release Programs
"The Alabama Department of Corrections has reversed a long-standing policy and will begin allowing HIV-[positive] prisoners to participate in work release programs," the Birmingham News/Huntsville Times reports (Lawson, 8/14). "The American Civil Liberties Union has fought to end the practice for decades and on Thursday praised the Alabama Department of Corrections for doing so this week," the Associated Press reports (8/13). Richard Allen, commissioner of the Department of Corrections, said, "It was just time. When those inmates first went into prison, people didn't know how HIV was transmitted and they were scared to death. As we've learned about HIV, people now realize it's not like swine flu; you can't get it from shaking hands. The attitude toward those inmates has changed considerably" (8/14).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.