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Minister urges private sector involvement in aids fight

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RELEASE COMMONWEALTH PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARYC. I . s. VJOINT STATEMENT BY THE TREASURER, THE HON P.J. KEATING MP AND DR NEAL BLEWETT, MINISTER FOR COMMUNITY SERVICES AND HEALTHMINISTERS URGE PRIVATE SECTOR INVOLVEMENT IN AIDS FIGHTTwo Federal Cabinet Ministers today urged Australian business leaders to acknowledge and fulfil their vital role in the management of the nation's AIDS epidemic.The Treasurer, Paul Keating, and the Minister for Community Services and Health, Neal Blewett, stressed the need for business and industrial executives to be fully a&iare of the effects of AIDS in the marketplace and the workplace."It is inevitable that AIDS will have serious implications for occupational health and safety policy making and implementation, with the potential to damage companies' industrial relations records and their profits."The private sector has a major role to play in Australia's efforts to contain the disease and to educate the community - one that is both in its own and the general community's best interests," they said.The Ministers announced that the program for the Third National Conference on AIDS, to be held in August, had been broadened to include a range of issues directly related to business."The second day of the Hobart conference will be jointly sponsored by the Australian Financial Review and will discuss issues such as the potential market for AIDS-related products and services, the implication of AIDS for the management of personnel, tourism and hospitality industries, and the role of insurance companies, the media and advertising agencies."The conference will also concentrate on other areas with direct and indirect consequences for the private sector - the emergence of psychiatric problems among the workforce, the likely costs of the epidemic to be borne by Federal and State governments and the economy as a whole," they said.Dr Blewett said the conference would be held in Hobart between AugustConference registration forms and information brochures can be obtained from ofices of the Department of Community Services and Health, State Health Departments and State AIDS Councils.CANBERRA 28 June 19884-6.