Chamber of Mines worried with high HIV stigmatisation

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——The Chamber of Mines is saddened by high levels of stigma at community levels against people living with HIV and AIDS in Lufwanyama and Kalulushi disitrcts.

Chibuluma Mines Social Services Officer, Margaret Mwale, said it was unfortunate that community members were marginalising those with the virus, despite gains the country had made in the fight against AIDS.

Mrs Mwale said this in Kalulushi at a workshop of the mining report on "enhancing mining’s contribution to the Zambian economy and society" independently done by the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM).

She said it was for this reason that the company adopted a policy to employ HIV AIDS counsellors coming from outside and not locally.

Mrs Mwale said Chibuluma Mine was working in partnership with a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) from Lusaka because the community complained of the locals releasing information to the public.

District Aids Task Force (DATF) Officer, Lyness Lubemba, said the idea by the mine to work with an NGO from Lusaka was okay, but it was important for them to engage the community in community sensitisation so that they go and access their services.

Mrs Lubemba said that Chibuluma Mine should involve the Community Based Organisations (COBs),   ZANIS and the Community AIDS Task Force (CATF) because that was the only way sensitisation would be effective.