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July is National HIV Awareness Month: In Memory of Mike

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Now, with December dubbed AIDS Awareness Day, all the kids, the teachers and many of their parents in our town’s schools wear red ribbons. As Frank Oldham Jr., president and chief executive officer of the National Association of People with AIDS (NAPWA), says,

A lot has changed over the last 30 years; HIV can now be a virus we live with, not one we have to die with. But that isnít enough. We need to significantly expand education and access to affordable care in our communities so that all Americans have the tools necessary to make well-informed choices that can help prevent the transmission of HIV, including getting tested regularly and knowing their HIV status.

There is plenty of awareness about AIDS and HIV. But how much understanding? Do the kids know that people in their community; that a classmate, could be HIV-positive? Or how important it is to get tested and why there should be no stigma for doing so?

NHAM seeks to rally the general public as well as the private sector, federal agencies and community organizations, to “reach the broad swath of Americans who remain untouched by current HIV education effort.” Significantly, the International AIDS Conference will take place in the US for the first time in more than 20 years this month. In addition, July 2012 is the second anniversary of the release of the United Statesí first-ever National HIV/AIDS Strategy by President Barack Obama.

Phill Wilson, president and chief executive officer of the Black AIDS Institute, emphasizes that “HIV is almost entirely preventable and we have a moral obligation to stop it in our communities.”

In memory of Mike and of so many others, please spread the word about †National HIV Awareness Month, to help address the HIV/AIDS crisis in the US and, ultimately, to work to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the US and everywhere.

 

Related Care2 Coverage

South L.A. Black Churches Grapple with HIV, AIDS

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School Rejecting HIV+ Teen Leads to Hershey Boycott

 

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Image courtesy of http://www.nationalhivawarenessmonth.org

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13 comments

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10:54AM PDT on Jul 4, 2012

And why for MIKE, all aids deaths are a sad state of affairs and the absolute vast majority did not have to happen!

8:49PM PDT on Jul 3, 2012

Dude...why is it that now we have to have a month for everything?! I don't understand why we need to worry and shine a bright light on something for a month out of the year when it should be rememebered all year.

12:04PM PDT on Jul 3, 2012

Your friend Jim sounds like a great man. I'm sorry he died and that he went through so much pain.

9:56AM PDT on Jul 3, 2012

To the many friends I lost, I remember you all. Education is the key to stopping the epidemic. Safe sex, testing and no needle sharing. Thanks Kristina for the article

7:51AM PDT on Jul 3, 2012

Detlef K.- Ahh yes. Marriage because HIV/AIDS is the plague sent by G-D to get rid of gays and drug users amirite?

You know what else would help stop the spread of HIV? Education, learning safer sex principles, STOPPING RAPE!!!, encouraging people to be tested on a regular basis and to be open about their sexual history with people, to not be ashamed of their bodies or their sexual activities.

Oh yeah, and to Love and Respect yourself and those you choose to have relations with.

7:16AM PDT on Jul 3, 2012

Detle K, choose one partner, stay with them for life and call it marriage. In a perfect world you would have the right to choose who you love and your constituional rights would be recognized if you were the same sex as your partner....Here is to remembering those who are no longer with us.

6:28AM PDT on Jul 3, 2012

Em memória de todas as pessoas que tiveram o contágio dessa doença HIV eu sinto muito

6:28AM PDT on Jul 3, 2012

Em memória de todas as pessoas que tiveram o contágio dessa doença HIV eu sinto muito

5:58AM PDT on Jul 3, 2012

HIV could be wiped out, off the planet, in 1 generation.... if people simply chose one partner and stayed with them for life. It's call marriage.

5:22AM PDT on Jul 3, 2012

I remember my brother every single day of my life. I know he is with me...

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