Around 140 ITF affiliates marked World AIDS Day with a range of activities designed to raise awareness and beat discrimination on Sunday 1 December.
Unions in over 50 countries, from Antigua, Bangladesh and Colombia to Venezuela, the UK and Zimbabwe ran a variety of activities in and around workplaces.
A number of unions, including affiliates in France and India, ran educational or awareness raising activities, breaking down discrimination through providing facts about living with HIV/AIDS. ITF affiliates in Dominica, Ghana, and Honduras amongst other places ran HIV/AIDS related rallies. A number of unions, including affiliates in Malawi, Madagascar and Mexico, distributed condoms to help keep workers safe from infection.
In countries like Ethiopia, Mauritius and Morocco, affiliates organised seminars and discussion sessions with employers and management to tackle HIV/AIDS related stigma in workplaces. In countries like Nepal, Burundi, and Kenya, affiliates used HIV/AIDS to organise truckers along borders with neighbouring countries and major transport corridors.
Steve Cotton, ITF acting general secretary, welcomed the breadth of activities: “I am delighted that ITF unions are at the forefront of the worldwide fight against HIV/AIDS stigma, discrimination, and further new infections. We know that, together, we have taken great strides. However, with 2.5 million new infections last year, we still have a long way to go before we reach our goal of zero new infections and zero discrimination. I applaud our affiliates’ work so far, and encourage more and more people to become change agents in their unions too.”
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