Today is National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. Our post last year discussed the many ways in which Black Americans have been disproportionately impacted by HIV and AIDS, and implored reflection on the societal barriers that prevent those affected from getting the support that they need. Given the disproportionate impact of HIV and AIDS on Black Americans, WORLD continues to address barriers to HIV prevention care and treatment.
In 2019, many of the same challenges still exist for African-American women and men affected by HIV and AIDS.Though we have been fortunate in the past year to engage in conversations about misogyny and racism on a national level (through the #MeToo movement and continued work of racial justice groups such as Black Lives Matter), discrimination and bigotry have not been eliminated in our real lives. In addition, low wages and lack of low-income housing require a commitment to advocacy for structural change.
WORLD maintains its commitment to addressing the disproportionate impact of HIV on the Black community. As Oakland demographics shift due to gentrification and skyrocketing housing prices, we know that it is also the Bay Area’s Black community that is disproportionately forced out of their homes and onto the streets – the effects of racism and homelessness also put people at greater risk for HIV, STIs, and sexual violence.
We must stay woke as we work to combat HIV, racism, and poverty, particularly as we evaluate proposed plans to eliminate new HIV infections by 2030. Given our reality, we will continue to advocate with and for those most most impacted in our community.
The theme of NBHAAD this year is: Together for Love: Stop HIV Stigma.” We hope you’ll join us in this effort, by donating your time or resources and working to combat the unconscious bias we all absorb through the media and policy choices.
Together in love, and never alone,
This post was written by Molly Roberts, WORLD Administrative Assistant