Workplace HIV & Wellness Voluntary Counselling and Testing Campaign launched in Trinidad and Tobago
August 15, 2015
On 25 August 2015, in Port of Spain, the Ministry of Labour and Small and Micro Enterprise Development (MOLSMED) of Trinidad and Tobago and the Ministry of Health, in collaboration with the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the UNAIDS Regional Support Team for the Caribbean, officially launched a national Workplace HIV & Wellness Voluntary Counselling and Testing Campaign (WVCT@WORK Campaign).
Through the National HIV/AIDS Workplace Advocacy and Sustainability Centre (HASC), theWVCT@WORK Campaign is geared at targeting a minimum of 5,000 workers in participating workplaces from the public, private and informal sectors to facilitate access to HIV testing, counselling and treatment and other health related services, such as blood pressure, body mass index and blood sugar testing in the workplace.
Ms. Dagmar Walter, Deputy Director, International Labour Organization Decent Work Team and Office for the Caribbean stated that, “Trinidad and Tobago, through its national ‘Workplace HIV and Wellness Counselling and Testing Campaign’, is the first country in the Caribbean to join the global VCT@WORK initiative.
VCT@WORK is a joint initiative between the ILO and UNAIDS to enable workers to know their HIV status and seek treatment as required. By facilitating access to HIV-related services via the workplace.
The WVCT@WORK Campaign supports the implementation of Trinidad and Tobago’s National Workplace HIV/AIDS Policy, which incorporates the 10 key human rights principles affirmed in the ILO’s HIV and AIDS Recommendation of 2010”.
Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Labour and Small and Micro Enterprise Development, Ms. Cecilia Greaves-Smith, who delivered the feature address, indicated her pleasure at seeing the implementation of the WVCT@WORK Campaign, which seeks to create healthy workspaces and a work environment free of HIV- related stigma and discrimination.
Also present at the launch were Dr. Ayanna Sebro, Deputy Programme Director, HIV and AIDS Coordinating Unit, Ministry of Health and Dr. Benjamin Alli, Acting Director, UNAIDS Regional Support Team for the Caribbean and other key stakeholders of the campaign.