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Understanding Policy

Many large and small businesses address HIV in their workplace policies and programs to promote good health — either directly or through general policies and initiatives. These programs can be also be cost-effective and can save businesses money. By educating yourself and your employees now, you can potentially reduce the financial impact, legal implications, work disruptions and other effects that HIV can have on a business when it is not prepared.

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Benefits of an HIV Policy

Workplace policies and programs benefits include:

  • Facilitates an inclusive and supportive work environment for employees living with HIV
  • Reduces employee fear, work disruption, and customer concern
  • Demonstrates a company’s corporate social responsibility, leadership, and commitment to their employees and communities
  • Complies with National and State disability and antidiscrimination requirements as mandated in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and state and local statutes

Comprehensive Policy Essentials

Federal laws and policies protect the rights of employees with disabilities or other health conditions, including HIV. Comprehensive HIV workplace policies should include the following elements:

  • Complies with federal, state, and local laws, including the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) guidelines, and the Affordable Care Act.
  • Integrates hiring, promotion, transfer, reasonable accommodation, and dismissal policies with regard to employees HIV
  • Provides information about benefit programs available to employees and family members with HIV and meets the standards of the Affordable Care Act
  • Promotes HIV prevention and understanding through employee education
  • Instructs managers and supervisors on how to address HIV and related workplace discrimination
  • Sets the standard of behavior and communication about HIV expected of staff
  • Informs staff on where to go for assistance and additional information
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