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(1) The spread among residents of the City, of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), which causes a spectrum of diseases up to and including Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) has reached the status of a serious epidemic within the City.
(2) The ways in which HIV is transmitted are generally well understood by scientists and medical professionals who have studied it, but are not well known by the general population of the City.
(3) HIV is transmittable only by direct contact of the broken skin mucous membranes, or blood of the uninfected person with the blood, semen, vaginal secretions or breast milk of the infected person, and it is not transmitted by being breathed on, or through insect vectors, such as mosquitos.
(4) HIV is transmitted from infected to uninfected persons only by direct blood-to-blood contact or through the type of contact involved in intimate sexual acts or the sharing of intravenous hypodermic needles, or by breast feeding, between infected and uninfected persons, and not through casual contact between infected and uninfected persons.
(5) No cases are known to medical science which involved transmission of HIV from infected to uninfected persons through the casual contact normally incident in the workplace.
(6) The only reported cases involving transmission of HIV to previously uninfected persons in the workplace have involved persons in medically-related fields who have accidentally become exposed to the blood of patients or blood samples in clinical or laboratory settings.
(7) Unlike the virus which causes the common cold, HIV is not a hardy virus, exposure to air in the atmosphere rapidly destroys it, and it cannot long remain viable outside the body of a biological host, other than in a stored quantity of blood.
(8) Unlike other more communicable diseases, HIV is very difficult to contract, and the circumstances of its being contracted usually involve affirmative and intentional and intimate contact between uninfected and infected persons, not the type of contact generally experienced in the workplace.
(9) Despite the medically proven facts, widespread ignorance exists to the general population about the way HIV is transmitted, and some are given to the belief that it may be propagated by means of the sneezing or coughing of infected individuals, in the way the common cold is spread, while others believe that it may be contracted from the bite of a mosquito which has previously bitten an HIV infected person, all of which beliefs are erroneous.
(10) In light of the prevalent erroneous beliefs about the way HIV is spread, the potential exists for tremendous disruption, disharmony and discord in the workplace when persons harboring such erroneous beliefs become aware that a co-worker has been or may be infected with HIV, while no real and appreciable danger of transmission of the disease exists.
(11) Experience in other cities, particularly San Francisco and Los Angeles, California, has shown that once workers become educated about how HIV is spread, their irrational fears subside, and a spirit of tolerance and cooperation with affected co-workers ensues.
(12) The Council deems that it is imperative to minimize the potential of disruption in the workplace which would otherwise occur, given the projected exponential increase in the numbers of persons who will become infected with HIV through the means in which it has been transmitted in the past, by requiring that all persons in cooperative work situations be educated in the ways in which HIV can and cannot be transmitted.