New Vision (Kampala)

Uganda: Judiciary Launches HIV/Aids Workplace Policy

The Judicial Service Commission (JSC) on Saturday launched a HIV/AIDS workplace policy as a response to the Government's call to protect the health of its workforce.

JSC chairman, retired Principal Judge James Munange Ogoola presided over the occasion that was held at Farmers House, Kampala. Commissioners Henry Kyemba, Grace Oburu and the secretary to the JSC, Kagole-Kivumbi attended the function.

Other dignitaries included the Ministry of Public Service Principal Assistant Secretary Geoffrey Ettedu, Juliet Katushabe of AIDS Control Programme, Lydia Mubiru, a MoH counselor and many others.

Ogoola said that the JSC was keen to ensure that the employers, employees and, the consumers of the services rendered and the immediate community are all healthy to ensure productivity and national development.

He said that by launching the workplace policy on the scourge, the Commission had the aim of assisting its staff and other employees to become more open on their status and live a better life. The Commission's two counselors would liaise with the Ministry of Health and AIDS Control Programme counselors to effectively carry out a tangible noble job.

"We in the Judicial Service Commission look at ourselves as a familyand whatever we do, we do it as a family and; the workplace policy will assist us to live a better life together," Ogoola said.

Earlier, Kagole-Kivumbi had told the gathering that by launching the workplace policy on HIV/AIDS, the Commission was simply domesticating what the Government had already put in place as a prevention measure. With the workforce of slightly over 60 people, they hoped to go do all in their power to assist one another with the help of their counselors towards the fight against the deadly virus.

Enginyu told the gathering that the national policy on HIV/AIDS was intended to prevent the spread of the deadly scourge among public servants and; mitigate the status among them. It was also intended to reduce the stigma among employees and workers.

While he encouraged the active men to go for circumcision, Enginyu, however, warned that they should use condoms in their sexual acts; explaining that circumcision was not scientifically hundred percent safe. It only reduces the spread of the deadly disease.

Ettedu said that the ministry of Public Service would encourage institutions like the JSC to also embrace the workplace policy on HIV/AIDS as a prevention measure against the disease whose cure was not in sight. He also encouraged the JSC to hold regular meetings on how to effectively implement the policy.

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