Workplace Policy on HIV/AIDS and Other Chronic Diseases approved by Cabinet
BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, JUNE 21ST 2012 (CUOPM) – Cabinet has approved a policy termed the St. Kitts and Nevis Workplace Policy on HIV and AIDS and Other Chronic Diseases, to ensure the right of all workers despite their HIV/AIDS and chronic disease status.
The policy is consistent with the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO’s) decent work agenda as St. Kitts and Nevis is one of the OECS countries that have entered into an agreement with the ILO to implement the decent work agenda through the Decent Work Country Programme (DWCP).
Minister of Information, Sen. the Hon Nigel Carty said that the policy deals explicitly with recognising HIV/AIDS and other chronic diseases as a workplace issue; reducing stigma and discrimination taking into account the gender dimension; protection against victimization; ensuring a healthy workplace with reasonable accommodation for workers; non-screening for employment purposes; confidentiality and prevention, counseling and support.
“Cabinet also approved the establishment of across-sectoral committee to be charged with the implementation of the St. Kitts and Nevis Workplace Policy on HIV and AIDS and Other Chronic Diseases.
Thirty years into the HIV and AIDS epidemic, research has indicated that persons between the ages of 15 and 49 years have been most affected by the disease.
HIV and AIDS and other chronic diseases continue to be a major concern for the Ministry of Health to reduce their incidence of the diseases, improve care and treatment thereby extending survivability among persons living with the diseases, and reduce stigma and discrimination in the workplace and in the wider community.