For decades, Uganda’s campaign against H.I.V. was exemplary, slashing the country’s death rate by nearly 90 percent from 1990 to 2019. Now a sweeping law enacted last year, the Anti-Homosexuality Act, threatens to renew the epidemic as L.G.B.T.Q. citizens are denied, or are too afraid to seek out, necessary medical care.
The law criminalizes consensual sex between same-sex adults. It also requires all citizens to report anyone suspected of such activity, a mandate that makes no exceptions for health care providers tending to patients.
Under the law, merely having same-sex relationships while living with H.I.V. can incur a charge of “aggravated homosexuality,” which is punishable by death.
Anyone who “knowingly promotes homosexuality” — by hiring or housing an L.G.B.T.Q. person, or by not reporting one to the police — faces up to 20 years in jail. Scores of Ugandans have been evicted from homes and fired from jobs, according to interviews with lawyers and activists.