Conference proceedings paper

Internalised stigma, discrimination, depression, social support and disclosure experiences of HIV+ workers in the South African construction industry

Research Areas

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Publication Details

Author list: Bowen P, Govender R, Edwards P, Cattell K

Publisher: ARCOM - Association of Researchers in Construction Management

Place: Manchester

Publication year: 2016

Journal name: Proceedings of the 32nd Annual ARCOM Conference, ARCOM 2016

Number in series: 106

Start page: 617

End page: 626

Total number of pages: 10

ISBN: 978-0-9955463-0-1



HIV/AIDS-related stigmas can be internalised by HIV+ persons, leading them to avoid treatment or care, engage in unsafe sex practices, feel emotional distress, isolation and self-loathing and perceive diminished social support. Using a selfadministered questionnaire, internalised stigma was investigated in 34 HIV+ respondents from a sample of 512 construction workers in the Western Cape of South Africa, with statistical analysis of the quantitative data. Particular emphasis was placed on lifestyle-related risk factors such as the condom use (lack of), numbers of sex partners, and failure to take anti-retroviral medication. The HIV+ workers were found to have lower AIDS-related knowledge than non-infected co-workers, and their internalised stigma was significantly associated with level of education. Improving knowledge, eradicating discrimination in the workplace and society, and recasting HIV/AIDS as a chronic but manageable disease could potentially help to address the problems presented by such stigma, but construction organisations will have to apply nuanced and sensitive approaches in their intervention management.


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Discrimination, HIV/AIDS

Last updated on 2017-21-04 at 18:19