Army veteran wants HIV+ soldiers to be allowed to serve

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Sergeant Nick Harrison, who serves in the D.C. Army National Guard, says he was denied the opportunity to serve as an officer and faces possible discharge from the United States armed services because of his HIV status. The soldier, a veteran of two wars, says he was denied a position in the Judge Advocate General (JAG) Corps – because current Pentagon policy bans people with HIV as “non-deployable”. Campaigners say the archaic policy does not take account of the fact that people living with HIV who are taking medication cannot pass on the virus so it is not risky for them to share space with other soldiers. Under a policy enacted earlier this year, service members who are considered “non-deployable” for more than 12 consecutive months are targeted with discharge from the service, so the activists have been given a hope that HIV-positive service personnel could be discharged. A second lawsuit from Lambda Legal and OutServe-SLDN represents an anonymous service member living with HIV who was denied a commission in the Air Force despite the medical conclusion approving his candidature.

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