AIDS impact on mining sector revealed

SOUTH AFRICA: AIDS impact on mining sector revealed

JOHANNESBURG, 6 Oct 2005 (PLUSNEWS) - HIV/AIDS tops the list of challenges not properly addressed in the occupational health sector of the mining industry, the South African chief inspector of mines has confirmed.

According to the local Engineering News online service, May Hermanus said the industry was not facing up to the challenge of dealing with AIDS sufficiently, due to the difficult and sensitive nature of the issue.

The Health and Safety Inspectorate's Annual Report for 2004/05 noted that "the mining industry has not been exempt from the pandemic", as an estimated 24 percent of miners were currently living with the HI virus.

Hermanus urged stakeholders to continue sharing best practices, which were just starting to emerge, and to formally document and share information.


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