South African Mines Must Have HIV, TB, Workplace Safety Policies To Receive License, Minister Says

Speaking at an event where South African Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe urged the mining industry to take greater steps to address tuberculosis (TB) and HIV among its employees, Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu “announced that mining companies, whose HIV, TB and workplace safety policies are being audited by her department, will have to submit their policies as a prerequisite for renewing their mining licenses,” PlusNews reports. “According to Shabangu, South Africa’s mining sector sees three times as many cases of active TB as the general population,” the news service writes.   

South African Minister of Health Aaron Motsoaledi in April “will join fellow health ministers and mining representatives from the Southern African Development Community (SADC) at [a] meeting in the Angolan capital, Luanda, to address the region’s response to TB in the mining sector,” according to PlusNews. “The gathering is expected to produce an SADC declaration on the issue by August 2012. A regional plan of action will inform future TB interventions, which may include the introduction of regional health passports for migrant workers and the harmonization of TB treatment policies and regimens,” the news service writes (3/26).

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