HIV Workplace Advocacy Advisory Board appointed

Senator the Honourable Jennifer Baptiste Primus (centre) with the newly appointed HIV Workplace Advocacy Advisory Board, from L-R: Simon Wiltshire, Izola Garcia, Brother Noble Khan, Violet Joseph, Cheryl Martyr, Natalie Willis (Chairperson and Permanent Secretary (Ag.), Dr. Keven Antoine, Aileen Clarke, Beryl Riley, Terrence Beepath, Heather Rodney, Gwendoline McLaren, Dr. Tracie Rogers. Missing: Colin Mills, Ariel Pino

Senator the Honourable Jennifer Baptiste-Primus, Minister of Labour and Small Enterprise Development presented Letters of Appointment to the newly appointed Members of the HIV Workplace Advocacy Advisory Board and expressed her great appreciation to them for accepting their new roles of Public Service.  Minister Baptiste Primus also advised the Members that this is a Multipartite Board and that they are aptly poised to fulfil their important mandate to protect the rights of HIV infected persons in the workplace. The Ministry of Labour and Small Enterprise Development recently launched its National HIV Workplace Policy in August of this year in Trinidad and in September in Tobago, as such, one very important aspect of the work of the Board is to brand the new Policy on the landscape of Trinidad and Tobago. 

Minister Baptiste Primus shared a brief historical perspective on the origins of the Board and informed that the Project Advisory Board (PAB) was established in 2006 to oversee the implementation of the International Labour Organization (ILO)/US Department of Labour (USDOL) HIV and AIDS Workplace Education Programme – An Accelerated Response: Trinidad and Tobago, which was a three year Pilot Project to address the issue of HIV/AIDS in the world of work in Trinidad and Tobago.  Following the end of the project in 2008 and the official hand over to the Ministry for continued implementation, Cabinet agreed to the re-designation of the Project Advisory Board as the HIV/AIDS Advocacy and Sustainability Centre (HASC) Advisory Board for a period of three (3) years.

 In October 2017, Cabinet agreed to the change of name of the HIV/AIDS Advocacy and Sustainability Centre to the HIV Workplace Advocacy Unit.  The name of the Board was then changed to the HIV Workplace Advocacy Advisory Board. The new Board is mandated to:

 1)      Guide the formulation and review of the National Workplace Policy on HIV and AIDS, HIV Workplace Advocacy Unit’s Sustainability Plan, Work Plan and the Monitoring and Evaluation Framework on HIV and AIDS in the world of work.

2)      Monitor, evaluate and report on the annual Work Plan in line with the Monitoring and Evaluation Framework and recommend adjustments in the implementation of proposed activities and timelines.

3)      Ensure alignment of HIV Workplace Advocacy Unit activities with the goals and targets of the National Strategic Plan for HIV and AIDS, Regional and International conventions, recommendations and strategic frameworks as applicable.

4)      Facilitate mobilization of human, technical and financial resources to ensure the sustainability of work of the HIV Workplace Advocacy Unit.

5)     Advocate for necessary legislative changes towards creating a more enabling environment for persons living with HIV in the workplace.

The newly appointed HIV Workplace Advocacy Advisory Board received their Instruments of Appointment from Senator the Honourable Jennifer Baptiste-Primus, Minister of Labour and Small Enterprise Development at the Ministry’s Head Office on Thursday December 28, 2017. 

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