Sex Trafficking and HIV

Problem:

​Federal laws prohibit discrimination against HIV/AIDS in the workplace.
However, many companies don’t have a clear written policy outlining employee rights and treatment within a company.

Facts:

Since HIV/AIDS first appeared more than thirty years ago, 50,000 people in the United States have been newly infected each year. The majority of those infected are between the ages of 17-49, and commonly in their working years. Advancements in medical research and antiretroviral drugs have delayed the onset of the disease. Those infected are living longer -- like so many other Americans in good health, they’re able to remain productive at work.

Social stigmatization is a problem in the workplace, despite many Federal laws that prohibit discrimination against those who are infected. Many stigmatic beliefs about how the disease is spread are outdated; we now know that anyone can become infected with HIV/AIDS, male or female, or those with any sexual preference. Individuals can’t become infected with HIV/AIDS through hugging, handshaking, or by sharing personal objects. It is important that an employer addresses individual concerns effectively.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) recognizes HIV/AIDS as a disability, and laws mandate that those infected with the disease should be treated in the same way, and with the same care, as individuals with cancer or heart disease.