At the Global Compact Policy Dialogue on HIV/AIDS, held in Geneva on 12-13 May, the International Organisation of Employers (IOE) and the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) announced an historic agreement to cooperate in the global fight against HIV/AIDS. The IOE and the ICFTU, both active participants in the Global Compact, issued a joint statement on 12 May calling on IOE and ICFTU affiliates and their member enterprises and trade unions around the world to give HIV/AIDS the highest priority. (The IOE and the ICFTU are the most representative employers and workers’ organizations in the world; the IOE represents 137 national employers’ organizations from 133 countries, while the ICFTU has 231 affiliated trade union centres in 150 countries representing 158 million members.)
As part of their joint commitment, the IOE and ICFTU said they would explore opportunities to identify and develop joint action programmes in partnership with their national members.
The IOE and ICFTU stated that their cooperative efforts would be built around the ILO Code of Practice on HIV/AIDS and the World of Work. In addition to promoting common efforts to increase the global adoption of the ILO Code, the IOE and ICFTU said they would encourage governments in developing and developed countries alike to address the scourge of HIV/AIDS through a comprehensive approach to the pandemic. (See attachment)
The IOE-ICFTU statement was issued on the occasion of the Global Compact Policy Dialogue on HIV/AIDS, attended by more than 100 participants from business, labour, civil society, academia, government and multilateral organizations. One of the overriding objectives of the meeting, convened in partnership with the International Labour Organisation, was to empower societal actors to contribute to prevention, awareness raising, care, support and treatment through the use of the ILO Code of Practice on HIV/AIDS and the World of Work.
The meeting, one of several Global Compact dialogues planned this year on various global issues, spawned four working groups focusing on different topics: 1) Collaboration with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; 2) “Next Wave” and Low Prevalence Countries; 3) SMEs/Suppliers Networks; and 4) Impact Management. Each working group submitted a host of recommendations relating to their topic. (See attachment) The respective groups will carry the recommendations forward in an effort to produce outcomes and solutions that can be utilized in the fight against HIV/AIDS.