20th International AIDS Conference - Melbourne, Australia


THGS06 Positive @ Work
  GV Panel Discussion
Venue: Clarendon Room D&E
Time: 24.07.2014, 14:30 - 15:30
Chair: Ken Davis, Australia

Three decades into the HIV response there is still an over-focus on individual vulnerabilities instead of social contexts and systemic factors. The global trade union movement's longstanding contribution to the response, in alliance with civil society organisations, such as confronting discrimination, securing employment-related entitlements and safeguarding the rights of women and men with HIV in the workforce, have been historically significant. A new era however, calls for new priorities, much less ad-hoc responses, new strategies and new alliances for social change. This session will explore synergies that occur when building advocacy capacity between the HIV and labour movements in the context of two key transformations identified by the post-2015 development agenda - “leaving no-one behind” and “transforming economies for jobs and inclusive growth”. The discussion will encourage an exchange on strategies for social change and the development of tools for translating advocacy into action at country and community level.
14:30
THGS0601
Powerpoint
Introduction
K. Davis, Australia

14:35
THGS0602
Introduction
A. Ouedraogo, Switzerland

14:40
THGS0603
South Africa Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union
N. Soboil, South Africa

14:48
THGS0604
Unions fighting discrimination: Observations from Australia
H. Purse, Australia

14:53
THGS0605
Observation on synergies between civil society actors , trade unions and HIV organisations.
B. O'Loughlin, Australia

15:00
THGS0606
Powerpoint
Trade union role in defending key collective rights in global recession times: Trade union LGBT centres and youth network
S. Marra, Italy

15:05
THGS0605
Discussion

Powerpoints presentations
Introduction - Ken Davis

Trade union role in defending key collective rights in global recession times: Trade union LGBT centres and youth network - Salvatore Marra



Rapporteur report

Global Village report by Christian Hui


THGS06 Positive @ Work

GV Panel Discussion

Clarendon Room D&E

24.07.2014, 14:30 - 15:30

Ken Davis, Australia

Three decades into the HIV response there is still an over-focus on individual vulnerabilities instead of social contexts and systemic factors. The global trade union movement's longstanding contribution to the response, in alliance with civil society organisations, such as confronting discrimination, securing employment-related entitlements and safeguarding the rights of women and men with HIV in the workforce, have been historically significant. A new era however, calls for new priorities, much less ad-hoc responses, new strategies and new alliances for social change. This session will explore synergies that occur when building advocacy capacity between the HIV and labour movements in the context of two key transformations identified by the post-2015 development agenda - “leaving no-one behind” and “transforming economies for jobs and inclusive growth”. The discussion will encourage an exchange on strategies for social change and the development of tools for translating advocacy into action at country and community level.

Rapporteur Notes by Christian Hui

Workers unions have played a vital role in the protection of many workers around the world. In particular, major workers unions in the world have acted in solidarity and adopted strong anti-discriminatory policies towards LGBTQI peoples and to ensuring accessible HIV treatments to PLHIVs.

 

As the only union-sponsored session at the AIDS2014 by the International Tribunal of Union Federation based in Belgium, the panelists focused on various topics such as current issues within the workers union movement such as trade agreements, affordable treatment access, ensuring adequate social protection to workers, and access to quality work

 

Introduction by Alice Ouedraogo, Secretary of the International Labour Organization in Switzerland

Many who are HIV+ fall under the productive age category and are working. Despite that fact that labour rights are often not considered human rights, it is imperative that HIV not be only treated as a public health issue but a development issue. Ensuring that HIV becomes a mainstream agenda topic can only help facilitate the community and workers union response in helping to ensuring that human rights are ensure and protected for workers and the broader community.

 

South Africa Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union by Nikki Soboil of South Africa

The South African Clothing and Textile Worker’ Union changed its approach to addressing HIV by only providing testing to its workers to a more comprehensive and multifaceted approach when they noticed a rise in funeral benefits rates during the AIDS epidemic. Today, the union provide downtown testing and support services through mobile clinics as well as male-circumcision programs are currently in-place.

 

Unions fighting discrimination: Observations from Australia by Harvey Purse, Australia

Australia made one of the world’s first union-led responses in HIV and one of the few bi-partisan governmental responses in the world. This led to a concerted trade union movement in the country. Major issue currently within the union movement include reconciling company profits yet ensuring adequate treatment access and the issues of trade agreements for intellectual properties (e.g. how major international pharmaceuticals’ commercial interests are being protected by the US’ trans pacific trade agreement)

 

Observation on synergies between civil society actors , trade unions and HIV organisations.by Bill O'Loughlin, Australia

As the Australian government shifts it funding focus away from the national health agenda and starts implementing a neo-liberal policy, the union movement is being challenged in many ways, including suffering from lowering of memberships and the changing political profiles of workers unions within the broader political landscape. Comparisons are made between the end of HIV exceptionalism and the challenges faced by trade unions. It is noted that on the international stage, more focus need to be placed on how HIV are impacting migrant workers.

 

Trade union role in defending key collective rights in global recession times: Trade union LGBT centres and youth network by Salvatore Marra, Italy

With cuts in funding and rising demands from unions, particularly from migrant workers who are HIV+ and fear persecution and discrimination, action needs to be taken to counter detrimental effects of austerity measures on HIV people. The Italian General Confederation of Labour from Italy has taken steps to promote HIV rights through initiatives such as AIDS e lavoro Project and joint trade union awareness and training of staff and union members.




   

    The organizers reserve the right to amend the programme.