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UNAIDS and hotels in Mexico launch AIDS prevention campaign

Summary

UNAIDS is involving the Mexican hotel industry in a prevention campaign around the International AIDS Conference in August 2008 and in the longer term through the development of sustainable long term HIV workplace policies & programmes.

UNAIDS and the Mexican hotel industry are launching an HIV prevention campaign entitled “The Life Initiative – Hotels addressing AIDS”. Aimed at hotel guests and staff the initiative will raise awareness about HIV prevention and non-discrimination of people living with HIV. The initiative will also promote the development of sustainable long-term HIV workplace policies and programmes in the hotels. The hotel industry is a key player in the response to AIDS as it can reach a wide and diverse audience with HIV prevention information including its large workforce.

The prevention campaign will include the display of AIDS related leaflets, posters and brochures, art exhibitions, distribution of free male and female condoms, and showing of AIDS related films in all participating hotels. Condoms will be distributed at all participating hotels via the “condom project” which has been financed with the support from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). One of UNAIDS’ partners in this initiative, IMPULSO – a network of NGOs experts on the provision of technical assistance on HIV in the workplace – will provide capacity building trainings which include situational analysis, stigma and discrimination program and HIV policy and program development. IMPULSO’s specific workshops in hotels also include training in the use and implementation of a software called Workplace Policy Builder designed to assist companies in developing their own AIDS policies. So far, more than 1,500 hotel employees have already been trained, covering over 7,000 rooms in hotels in Mexico City. They received education information on HIV prevention, an overview of the epidemic in Mexico, and were sensitized on issues related to stigma and discrimination in the workplace.