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HIV/AIDS: Transport Wokers Take Action

This book is aimed at leaders in transport unions, especially senior shop stewards,
educators and negotiators. Whilst this book mainly draws on the experiences of
African and Asian transport unions, it is intended as a resource for transport unions
wherever their members are affected by HIV/AIDS.
The manual is divided into four sections. The first deals with HIV/AIDS from the
perspective of the transport sector, and shows why particular emphasis needs to be
placed on this sector. It deals with some facts and figures about the spread of the
virus, and the particular vulnerability of transport workers.
Chapter two deals with the facts about the disease: how it is spread, how it progresses
through the body, and what treatments are available, including anti-retroviral
drugs. It also deals with ways to live positively with the virus, so that the infected
person can stay healthy for longer. The issues of gender and culture are also
addressed within the chapter.
The third chapter deals with the role of the trade union. It includes inspiring examples
from transport unions around the world, and lays out a framework for action.
Our belief is that union strategies should begin with a rights-based approach: trade
unions must fight discriminatory practices and stigma. They must also fight for better
care and support, as well as for anti-retroviral treatment for their members.
The fourth chapter deals with workplace policies, collective agreements, and negotiating
strategies, both within multinationals and smaller companies.
Each chapter also contains some case studies to refer to, as well as a set of educational
activities. At the end of each chapter you will find a summary of the key information
covered. This is provided on a separate page, which can be photocopied if
The idea is that you will be able to use the material in this resource book to facilitate
a workshop or discussion with workers or shop stewards and office bearers. Users
are encouraged to develop their own educational material that is specific to their
needs. Further, we hope that you will be able to use the information here in your
negotiations, and thus win the best possible agreements for workers.
At the end of the book are a glossary, links to organisations and some sample policies,
including the ILO code of practice on HIV/AIDS and the world of work, which
we see as a very useful foundation for developing a policy.
We trust that you will be able to use the information provided here to positively
influence your union’s activities around HIV/AIDS, and that this will result in
empowered, better informed and healthier members.
Best wishes in your campaign and struggles against HIV/AIDS!