Alice Ouedraogo is Chief of the HIV/AIDS Programme at the International Labour Organization
Heavy trucks pass through the Chirundu Corridor, one of the major routes connecting Zimbabwe and Zambia in southern Africa. This is a vital transport artery, important for the economies of both countries and their neighbors. It is also a major route for the transmission of HIV.
The mix of long-distance lorry drivers — who go weeks at a time without seeing their families — with widespread poverty existing along the corridor, results in sexual encounters between drivers and women. The risks they take with their health have an impact on the wider community.
Margherita Licata and Kofi Amekudzi, Technical Specialists ILOAIDS
The more we learn about the challenges of responding to the Ebola Virus Disease in West Africa, the easier it becomes to discern parallels to the HIV epidemic — another health crisis , which we’ve been battling for over 30 years now. The HIV response has some valuable lessons for the way we confront the disease in general, particularly in the workplace. Here’s an example.
About four years ago, we were working in southern Malawi with the ILO Programme for HIV/AIDS on a project targeting workers at the Lujeri Tea Estate. Though the rate of new infections has slowed, Malawi still has some of the highest HIV infection rates in the world, affecting one in every four people who lives there.