Asia: AIDS Law Database Launched

(Mar. 10, 2010) On March 9, 2010, Asia Catalyst, “a resource for grassroots groups working for economic and social rights in Asia,” announced the launch of its free Asia AIDS Law Database, in a “public beta” version searchable in English and Chinese. An Asia Catalyst press release states that the new database, which has HIV/AIDS-related statutes (more than 100 from throughout Asia), is the first of its kind. (Press Release, Asia Catalyst, Asia AIDS Law Database Launches Online (Mar. 9, 2010), available at; Posting of Donald Clarke, dcclarke@YAHOO.COM, to CHINALAW@HERMES.GWU.EDU (Mar. 8, 2010) (on file with author).) The records, which are all in English, range from Cambodia's draft law on drug control to the 2007 Laotian Law on the Protection of the Rights and Interests of Children to the national HIV/AIDS policy of Bangladesh. (Id.)

According to Ken Oh, editor of Asia Report (Yazhou Diaocha), the database's host site, “[t]he database will enable lawyers to analyze AIDS-related laws, and use them in their own advocacy … . Asian AIDS activists tell us that some governments are more responsive to model language from another Asian law.” (Id.)

The database has drop-down menus with a selection of countries (22 jurisdictions are listed), subject matter, and levels of government. The search results are in the form of the title of the law or policy and a hyperlink to its location online. Below the “Search for Laws” section, the database home page displays “Recently Added Laws” (but not necessarily recently enacted), with hyperlinks to more information and the text. (Asia AIDS Law Database, (last visited Mar. 10, 2010).)