The man, known only as Anthony, has applied for his license but has been refused by the CAA. He his currently appealing against the ruling.
An HIV-positive British man has been told that he will not be able to become a commercial airline pilot due to his current medical status, BuzzFeed News reports. The outlet reports that the man, referred to only as Anthony, has been attempting to obtain his pilot’s license, but has had his application refused by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the body responsible for regulating commercial aviation in the United Kingdom.
The man has accused the CAA of discrimination and told the outlet that the body’s decision has “destroyed a boyhood dream.” He has spent six months unsuccessfully attempting to appeal the CAA’s decision, which in itself is based on regulations set by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
Under the current rules, an HIV-positive status prevents would-be pilots from obtaining a license. However, current qualified and serving pilots who may contract the virus may continue to work.
Anthony has described the current situation as a “catch-22.” However, it was only in 2014 that HIV-positive candidates were able to apply for a medical certificate known as an “operational multi-crew limitation (OML).” This documentation would have allowed HIV-positive pilots to fly, providing they weren’t undertaking solo flights.
However, it appears that, between Anthony’s positive diagnosis in 2014 and the present, CAA rules pertaining to HIV-positive pilots have changed.
“The CAA’s new policy was that only people who already held a commercial license with a standard medical certificate could obtain the multi-crew limitation. Those with HIV are unable to get the standard medical certificate to get the license to then apply for the limitation,” the outlet states.
Speaking of his case to the outlet, Anthony said, “It has had a fundamental impact. It means the one career choice I want to make and want to do, I’m being told no, and the cause of that is because I’m HIV-positive. It has destroyed a boyhood dream for me. It makes it difficult to accept the [HIV] diagnosis because you want to believe there are no restrictions to you, but actually there are.”