AIDS Case in China

China has seen its first case of an AIDS patient being awarded compensation for discrimination on account of his condition.

Xiao Qi (a pseudonym) said Thursday that he had received 45,000 yuan in compensation from an education bureau which allegedly disqualified him from consideration for a teaching post last year after a pre-employment health check uncovered that he was HIV-positive.

“I was indignant when I learnt that I lost the chance to be a teacher, but the compensation I got on Tuesday just illuminates that the law can guarantee our [AIDS patients] legal rights,” said Xiao.

In November 2012, Xiao brought to court a suit against the education bureau of Jinxian County in east China’s Jiangxi Province, over the sudden turning-down of his application to become a local school teacher.

He had passed the teacher qualification examination in June with high scores.

Xiao and the county’s education bureau reached an agreement as a result of mediation by a local court on Dec. 27.

Under the agreement, Xiao agreed to drop the charge against the county’s education bureau of infringing his rights of equal employment, while the bureau would pay 45,000 yuan (7,228 U.S. dollars) to him in compensation.

“This is the first case in which an AIDS patient has got compensation in employment discrimination in China, and it is significant,” said Cheng Yuan, director of Tianxiagong (meaning “justice for all”), an NGO that focuses on issues of discrimination against people with disabilities, Hepatitis and HIV/AIDS.

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