Today is World AIDS Day and I’ve been collecting some of the videos coming out for y’all. But first, here are some things can be done to try to “get to zero” new cases of HIV/AIDS and improve support for people living with HIV/AIDS:
– Take care of yourself and your partners. Get tested for HIV.
– Take control and negotiate safe sex.
– Take steps to educate yourself on HIV/AIDS. To start, the Canadian AIDS Society has some good resources.
– Take a minute to learn about the problems with Canada’s Access to Medicines Regimes (CAMR) and urge your federal politicians to act now to make the reforms necessary to ensure people with HIV/AIDS in foreign countries can access life-saving medicine.
We also need to remember that sexism, homophobia, racism, and colonialism are all factors in AIDS transmission. The vast majority of new AIDS cases worldwide are among young women, demonstrating the link between gender inequality and the risk of infection, heightened by gender violence, pressure on young women to have unprotected sex, and inadequate sex education.
As to homophobia, in many countries sex between men is even more stigmatized than in North America, and is sometimes even criminalized. Having to hide same-sex relationships means MSMs are often unable to negotiate safe sex or seek testing or treatment for HIV/AIDS.
Finally, in Canada black people and First Nations people are dramatically overrepresented. Aboriginal people made up 11% of new infections in 2009, despite comprising only 3.8% of the country’s population. According to Ken Clement, CEO of the Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network: “However, discrimination, ignorance and stigma cause serious road blocks – in our communities and in places where our people receive health care – and challenge our ability to meet these basic rights, which threatens the very integrity of Aboriginal families.”
Any long-term strategy to “get to zero” will need to account for the ways in which social stratification and inequality influences HIV transmission.
So now onto some videos from this year’s World AIDS Day:
Wendy Williams and the National Minority AIDS Council say “HIV Ends With Us”
In his World AIDS Day address, President Obama vows: “We will win this fight.”
Brent & Eliot get tested for HIV in this episode of the web series “It Gets Betterish”. Contains NSFW language.
And finally, though obviously not from this year, enjoy Blanche setting Rose straight on the fact that “AIDS is not a bad person’s disease.”