The Legal Service of the Centre for Life has been in effect since June 2012, offering specialized information on the rights that people living with HIV have in vital areas of their lives, as well as selective legal representation in cases of violation of human rights.
Specifically, the legal adviser of the Centre for Life supports its visitors in the following ways:
• Support access to healthcare by interfering with the competent nursing institutions (eg: refusal of medical services, exclusion from treatment, uninsured people living with HIV) and in cases of non-compliance of the institutions by filing reports and complaints at the independent administrative authorities and at the competent judicial body.
• We interfere with the competent bodies in cases of violation of privacy (eg: HIV testing as a hiring prerequisite, non-consensual HIV testing, breach of confidentiality, indication of the condition in public documents).
• We provide legal support and undertake judicial and extrajudicial actions in cases of usage of the HIV status of a person as a mean of blackmail from partners, coworkers, relatives or other parties.
• We help people fill applications, memorandums, appeals and objections towards the settlement of administrative issues that people living with HIV might face (eg: refusal of issue/re-issue of residence permits for immigrants, non-adherence to the procedures of the Disability Certification Centre, pensions, allowances).
• We protect the labor rights of people living with HIV with extrajudicial and judicial actions (eg: exclusion of people living with HIV from certain professions, HIV testing as a prerequisite for a job application or for entering vocational schools, layoffs/degradation of employees living with HIV and unfavorable consequences against them after the reveal of their seropositivity in their working environment, as well as problematic implementation of law, such as the issue of not be given one extra month of leave from work, which all people living with HIV are entitled to.)
• We undertake cases of removal of custody from a parent due to his/hers HIV status or deprivation of the right of communication from a parent living with HIV with their child.
• We perform support interventions of detainees and ex-detainees who live with HIV, through a program of social and legal support of detainees in the “Aghios Pavlos” Hospital (Detainee’s Hospital of Korydallos), the women’s department of Korydallos Detention Centre, the Detention Facilities of Attika’s and Thessaloniki’s Aliens, the Diavata detention centre and the Elaionas Detention Centre.
• We handle deportation cases of aliens who live with HIV, to countries that there is no sufficient healthcare and medical support.
• We actively contribute in the creation of collaboration networks with civil society actors and we carry out interventions to the competent governmental bodies, for highlighting the rights and the issues that derive from the legal gaps.
• We submit proposals for the implementation of legal framework of protection of the rights of people living with HIV.
Head of Legal Service: Chara Papageorgiou | email: [email protected]