The Reserve Bank of Malawi officially launched its HIV and Aids Workplace Policy on 11th August, 2012 at the RBM Clubhouse in Area 47, Lilongwe.
Launched under the theme “Striving towards zero infections, zero discrimination, zero Aids related deaths”, the day began with a 2.77km big walk, drama, traditional dances and presentations of certificates to peer educators. Partner organizations such as Malawi Blood Transfusion Services, Banja la Mtsogolo, Partners in Hope and Rab Processors were also in attendance displaying a range of their products and services.
Speaking at the launch ceremony Governor Mr. Charles Chuka said the policy has been launched to spell out the way the Bank’s will deal with the pandemic. “HIV and AIDS affects every workplace with prolonged staff illness, absenteeism and death impacting on productivity, employee benefits, occupational safety and health, costs and workplace morale. We are taking this issue seriously and wish to send a strong message of our commitment to dealing with it. We are aiming at a 0% prevalence rate of Aids related deaths.”
Guest of Honour Dr. Thomas Bisika from National Aids Commission (NAC) said he was pleased the Reserve Bank had taken a step further in addressing issues of HIV and Aids and pledged NAC’s support in the policy implementation. He further appealed to other organizations that had not yet launched their policies to do so.
The Policy will amongst others, provide a framework for consistency of practices, protect rights, set standards of behaviour and inform affected and infected employees of assistance that is available.
The Reserve Bank currently has a fully-fledged HIV & AIDS Workplace Programme which mitigates against the effects of HIV and AIDS amongst its employees and their families.