HIV testing centres staff call off strike
Over 3,000 technicians and counsellors working at HIV testing centres across the state resumed work on Friday after the mayor assured to look into their grievances.mumbai Updated: Jan 02, 2010 01:38 IST
Over 3,000 technicians and counsellors working at HIV testing centres across the state resumed work on Friday after the mayor assured to look into their grievances.
The technicians went on a strike on December 8, 2009, to demand the status of permanent government employees, better salaries and related benefits.
“We met the Mayor and she assured us she would take measures to ensure that we are absorbed by the civic authorities as permanent employees”, said Pallavi Rane, an HIV technician who is the president of the Mumbai wing of Rashtriya AIDS Niyantran Karmchari Sanghthana.
In Mumbai, 45 of the 74 Integrated Counselling and Testing Centres were severely affected by the strike.
More than 30 centres were shut and 20 were offering only select services.
The employees also demanded health insurance from the government, considering the high-risk nature of their job.
“Many HIV patients have tuberculosis. Four of our colleagues succumbed to TB last year and two female technicians had to abort their pregnancies after contracting it,” said Kiran Shah, a technician at a HIV centre in the suburbs.