Implementation of workplace HIV and Aids interventions in the Zimbabwe Republic Police received a major boost with the official launch of the ZRP HIV and Aids Policy on 23 May 2018 by the Propol for Manicaland at Mutare Main Camp.
In line with the strategy, ZRP shall provide comprehensive HIV and Aids prevention, treatment and support services to its members, their dependants and the surrounding communities in a bid to contribute to the achievement of the 90-90-90 fast-track targets by 2020.
In particular the strategy seeks to prevent new HIV infections in tandem with national efforts to close the tap of new infections, treat persons living with HIV and mitigate the socio-economic impact of the pandemic.
Services to be offered will include HIV awareness, HIV testing and antiretroviral therapy, anchored on principles of confidentiality and harm reduction.
In her launch remarks, the Propol for Manicaland said that the development of the policy was motivated by the realisation that HIV and Aids had a serious impact on the lives of the police officers and their operation of duty.
She said: a�?The ZRP introduced the policy with the aim of ensuring consistent and equitable response to HIV among police officers, their dependants and the community to prevent new cases of HIV, among othersa�?.
She highlighted that the policy was a very welcome development as police officers were always at a heightened risk of acquiring HIV as they regularly come into contact with blood when attending to accident victims.
She challenged all senior staff to ensure that the policy was widely circulated to all officers across the country.
The launch event was filled with entertainment through music provided by the ZRP band and drama by sex workers under the tutelage of CeSHHAR.
The launch was part of the ZRP Medical Services Annual HIV and Aids Conference supported by the National Aids Council.
Underscoring the strategy by Nac to support the annual conference, Nac workplace co-ordinator Vimbai Mdege said: a�?As we run the last mile of ending Aids by 2030, the National Aids Council took a conscious decision to support not just the ZRP but the entire security services as part of our efforts to capacitate sectors to better respond to HIV. It has been ordinarily difficult to reach the working people with HIV andAids services and we decided to do so through sectors.
a�?Nac has for some time now been facilitating such meetings for various sectors including the public, private, labour and informal among others. Through these sectors, we are promoting uptake of HIV prevention services to close the tap of new infections with increased focus on key populations and leaving no one behind.a�?