‘Indian corporates need to do more about AIDS, HIV awareness’

November 30th, 2010 - 7:27 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Nov 30 (IANS) The corporate houses in India should come forward and undertake HIV/AIDS awareness programmes within the organisations to sensitise their employees, an International Labour Organisation (ILO) official said Tuesday.

“More corporate houses need to come forward and undertake HIV/ AIDS awareness program to increase awareness among its employees and labour force because the possibilities of exposure to HIV are quite high in workplaces,” said P. Joshilla, ILO program officer (training and advocacy) at a seminar ‘Prevention of HIV/AIDS in the world of work: A Tripartite Response’.

A study has revealed that in corporate houses where the employers have not undertaken any HIV/AIDS awareness program, the employees are less informed about the modes of transmission of the diseases and measures to prevent exposure and infection.

Besides, the stigma and discrimination attached to the disease is at times harder to cope with than the disease itself, said Joshilla, while addressing the seminar organised by the Bharat Chamber of Commerce on the eve of World AIDS Day (Dec 1).

Joshilla later told IANS that West Bengal is a vulnerable state compared to the other states because it has a large number of migrant labours.

“So if more corporate houses take up awareness programmes without delay, then it will be more cost effective. Otherwise, if such programmes are delayed, then it would lead to increased cost to the employer and decreased productivity because of loss of skilled and experienced manpower,” he said.

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