Local companies are now scaling up their response to HIV and Aids by developing workplace policies aimed at alleviating the impact of the pandemic on business.

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The effects of the HIV and Aids pandemic is also felt by the business sector as the bigger percentage of people who are infected are in the productive 15 to 45 years age group.

After the realisation that the HIV pandemic is a development challenge that requires a comprehensive multi-faceted approach, the Zimbabwe Business Council on Aids ZBCA in collaboration with the Zimbabwe Aids Network, Development Data and SIDA have held a meeting in Harare to find ways of addressing gender, health and HIV related issues in workplace programmes.

Speaking on the sidelines of the one day meeting, ZBCA Programme Manager Tendai Chiduku said male and female workers face different social and biological vulnerabilities to HIV and Aids, adding that workplace environments can worsen their risks if companies fail to take appropriate measures to assist the affected and infected.

The initiative by ZBCA is expected to increase companies’ awareness and help them come up with workplace policies to alleviate the impact of HIV and Aids on their employees and their dependents.