The University of Warwick has achieved Level One of the Positive Allies charter.
The Positive Allies charter shows that an organisation is friendly towards, and inclusive of, people living with HIV and that the organisation actively challenges HIV stigma.
Warwick has been successful at achieving Level One of the charter. The Positive Allies panel were particularly pleased with the evidence of a strong ethos toward equality and diversity within the organisation.
Public Health England reports that Coventry, West Midlands, has amongst the highest diagnosed HIV prevalence per 1,000 population aged 15-59 of that in 16 other similar local authorities.
“The diagnosed prevalence per 1,000 residents aged 15-59 years was 3.2, worse than 2.4 per 1,000 in England. The rank of Coventry was 34th highest (out of 147 UTLAs/UAs). Since 2017, the change in Coventry was 0%; in the 5 years since 2013, the increase was 3%.”
Learn more about HIV in the UK
In 2018, an estimated 103,800 people are living with HIV in the UK, (according to the Terrence Higgins Trust). Of those, 69% are men and 31% are women. In the UK, HIV status is covered by the Equality Act 2010.
The experiences of people living with HIV in the United Kingdom reveal worrying trends. The UK Stigma Survey (2015) found that:
- A significant proportion of respondents felt stigmatised and had experienced HIV-related discrimination at work.
- This had a substantial effect on wellbeing; with around half reporting feelings of shame, guilt or self-blame in relation to their HIV status in the last year, while one in five reported having felt suicidal.
- Despite being a named condition in the Equality Act, a fifth of respondents who had disclosed their HIV positive status at work had experienced discrimination in their current or previous job.
- 12% of participants had decided not to apply for or turned down, employment or a promotion due to their HIV status.
- 41 people in the study reported losing their job or another source of income due to their HIV status in the last twelve months, and one in nine reported being denied insurance products (for example, job protection) in the last year, which is illegal.
- Over half (52%) of working respondents reported they had told no one in their workplace about their HIV status (Stigma Survey, 2015).
Therefore, over the next 12 months we commit to:
- Continue to raise awareness of the impact of stigma and discrimination for people living with HIV.
- Encourage staff to share disabilities to ensure adequate support is provided with referrals to Occupational Health where necessary.
- Encourage staff to complete My Adjustment Passport to facilitate a conversation with their line manager should they require any additional support or adjustments.
- Continue to encourage staff to complete the HIV and AIDS Awareness Training provided by University of Sunderland (on completion please send your certificate to Claire Algar, ED&I Officer at ).
- Challenge discrimination in recruitment, promotion, and progression for people living with HIV.
- Ensure staff and students are aware of testing centres in Coventry and surrounding areas.
- Promote campaigns such as World Aids Day.
- Engage with local community groups and charities in Coventry and surrounding areas.
HIV and AIDS Awareness Training
Warwick staff and students are encouraged to complete free online HIV and AIDS Awareness Training provided by the University of Sunderland (training will take one hour to complete).
Please note, we are required to notify the University of Sunderland how many people at Warwick complete this training. Therefore, upon completion, please email a copy of your completion certificate to Claire Algar, ED&I Officer, on.
The University is committed to equality of opportunity for all staff and students to protect and promote the health and wellbeing, enabling everyone to be their absolute self during work and study. We aim to provide a fair and supportive working environment that is free from discrimination and prejudice for employees living with HIV. The University accepts that it has a role and responsibility to raise awareness, provide information and advice on HIV or AIDS.
Learn more about HIV and AIDs from the following sources:
- During November and December get a free HIV postal test.
- HIV and AIDS Awareness Training - on completion please send your certificate to Claire Algar, ED&I Officer at .
- Things Not To Say To Someone Who's HIV Positive (Short Video).
- Looped in - the HIV Resource you control.
- The Terence Higgins Trust - the UK's leading HIV and Sexual Health charity.
- LIVLife- Empowering one another.
We're supporting everyone to live, work, and study positively at Warwick. Access support for HIV+ staff and students, information on HIV testing and prevention, and develop understanding and allyship.