World AIDS Day, 2013
December 1, 2013 marks the 25th Anniversary of World AIDS Day. The National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC), America's leading Black LGBT civil rights organization focused on federal public policy, joins with the global community to unite in the fight against HIV, to affirm and support those living with HIV, and to remember those we have lost from the virus. This year's World AIDS Day theme is:
"Getting to Zero:
Zero New HIV Infections. Zero discrimination.
Zero AIDS-related deaths."
| NBJC staffers participating in the #FacingAIDS campaign.
Even though our world and nation have made substantive progress to address the HIV epidemic, much work remains left to be done in order for the Black community to "GET TO ZERO."
After more than 30 years since the first reported cases of AIDS in the United States, the Black community continues to be deeply impacted by the epidemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
, Black Americans represent about 14 percent of the U.S. population, but disproportionately make up almost half of all new HIV infections in the United States each year as well as account for half of all people living with HIV.
Young Black gay, same-gender loving (SGL), and bisexual men, and other men who have sex with men (MSM), are especially at risk for HIV. This group now accounts for more new HIV infections than any other demographic in the United States. The Black AIDS Institute reported in 2012 that Black MSM make up nearly one in four new HIV infections in the United States and one in six Americans living with HIV. The report adds that HIV represents a lifetime challenge for Black MSM, stating that one in four Black MSM are already infected with HIV by the time they reach age 25, and by age 40, 60% of Black MSM are living with HIV. These statistics are just as alarming for Black transgender people who are also disproportionately affected by HIV. In the National Transgender Discrimination Study (NTDS) published in 2011, over one-fifth of Black respondents were HIV-positive (20.23%) and an additional 10% reported that they did not know their status.
Here are some ways we can collectively take action on this World AIDS Day and fight against the HIV epidemic in our community:
- Get tested for HIV every six (6) months. Need help finding somewhere to get tested? Visit www.hivtest.org to find testing services in your local community.
- If you are HIV positive, find a provider you can trust and develop a treatment plan in order to take control of your health. Click here to find a list of providers in your community.
- Talk about HIV. Organize HIV educational activities in your community like chats, forums and other activities at libraries, churches, school or even through social media. To find out events already happening in your community, please visit www.Greaterthan.org.
- How are you #FacingAIDS? #FacingAIDS is a national conversation about confronting stigma and promoting HIV testing. Start off by uploading your photo at Facing.AIDS.gov. Then, use the hashtag #FacingAIDS on your tweets, Facebook post, Instagram photos, Vine videos, YouTube and more. Don't forget to tag @NBJContheMove.