Guangdong to end teacher HIV tests

AFP-JIJI

The Chinese province of Guangdong is likely to abolish mandatory HIV tests for teachers, state media said, making it the first mainland region to eliminate a measure long branded as discriminatory.

HIV carriers are excluded from public servant jobs, including teaching and policing, in many provinces across China, leading to accusations of prejudice from rights groups. But the state-run China Daily said Tuesday that HIV tests had been removed from a draft list of health standards for teaching candidates in Guangdong.

The step is a “breakthrough” in a drive to overturn discriminatory laws and brings Chinese policy in line with international norms, said Lu Jun, head of the Beijing-based rights group Yi Ren Ping Center.

“It’s the first time (a province in China) has made a change. Such rules are unimaginable in other countries and having them changed is inevitable,” he said.