HIV and Mobile Workers: A Review of Risks and Programmes among Truckers in West Africa

Number of Pages: 
48 pages
Electronic copy only

This volume, jointly produced by the IOM and the Joint United National Programme on HIV/AIDS, reviews HIV-related risks and programmes for a category of worker who moves from place to place for professional reasons, truckers. It focuses on a region not well covered by other reviews, West Africa, with references to South Asia in order to highlight similarities when the profession is the same, but the region is different.

Based on an extensive review of publications and conference presentations, the document identifies the living and working conditions that put truckers at risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, then gives examples of programmes aimed at promoting behaviour change among truckers. Perhaps the most important part of the review is the formulation of recommendations for research and for programme strategies, such as increasing our understanding of the dynamics of 'risk zones'; developing creative means of outreach; and elaborating measures to decrease denial and stigma and to increase access to condoms, to voluntary counselling and testing, and to treatment for sexually transmitted infections.

The review concludes, however, that programmes that target truck drivers alone will fail: HIV prevention and care programmes for truck drivers must include surrounding communities, the particular environments that grow up around transport nodes, and also the families and other partners of the truckers. In sum, such programmes must involve all of those who may become vulnerable to HIV and AIDS because of the movement of goods along highways.

Table of contents: 
  • Introduction 
  • Objectives, methods and plan
  • STI/HIV Risk Factors among Truckers in West Africa
  • Examples of STIs/HIV Prevention Programmes for Truckers
  • Moving Forward
  • Annex 1 - References for Table 1 (Reported HIV Prevalence among Truckers in Several Countries of West Africa) 
  • Annex 2 - Examples of HIV Prevention Programmes Targeting Truck Drivers in West Africa 
  • Endnotes