The Botswana Federation of Trade Unions (BFTU) will next week Friday petition the Minister of Labour and Home Affairs, Charles Tibone, to table a bill that will protect HIV/AIDS infected workers against discrimination in the workplace.
This follows a campaign launched last year by the Botswana Networks on Ethics, Law and HIV/AIDS (BONELA) and its partners in civil society, which many of them were unions.
The campaign drummed up support and collected signatures for specific legislation protecting workers and job applicants presumed to be, or in fact are, HIV positive from discrimination by employers and co-employees. The coalition has garnered close to 13 000 signatories.
According to a press release, BONELA Chairperson, Martin Mosima, was quoted saying that people living with HIV/AIDS face double jeopardy. He said they are faced with a host of health problems, extreme prejudice and stigmatization from their employers and other members of society, and now the law fails them.
BONELA is on a mission to create an enabling and just environment for those infected and affected by HIV and AIDS. Its activities are aimed at ensuring that ethics, law and human rights are made an essential part of the national response to fighting the disease.