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Unions and employers must to more to ensure HIV/AIDS sufferers are not stigmatised at work

HIV and AIDS are workplace issues and employers need to address the issue, according to the TUC.

Speaking yesterday at the TUC World Aids Day Seminar, Kay Carberry, TUC assistant general secretary, said as more than nine in 10 of world's population who are living with HIV or AIDS are of working age, the response of workplaces around the world was an issue that could not be ignored.

Carberry said: "Around the world, there are more than 33 million people living with HIV/AIDS and over 30 million of these are of working age. Most are in developing countries, in Africa in particular, and over half of them are women.

"It is a workplace issue that cannot be ignored and unions around the world are working closely with employers to ensure that affected workers are not stigmatised because of their condition and receive all the help they need to be able to continue at work for as long as possible."

The International Labour Organisation is currently working on a new recommendation covering the issue of AIDS in the workplace, and the TUC hopes when this is finalised next year, the agreement will open up new avenues for more action in workplaces on the issue.