World AIDS Day 2016: How We’re Working to End AIDS

  • Photo of event attendees from World AIDS Day 2015

December 1 is World AIDS Day, when people living with and affected by HIV/AIDS all over the world commemorate those lost, show support for all affected, and recommit to HIV education, prevention, treatment, and advocacy.

An estimated 37 million people in the world are living with HIV/AIDS, including an estimated 1.2 million Americans.

In the United States, men who have sex with men, such as gay and bisexual men, still face the highest risk of any other group. “1 in 6 gay and bisexual men will be diagnosed with HIV in their lifetime, including 1 in 2 black/African American gay and bisexual men and 1 in 4 Hispanic/Latino gay and bisexual men,” according to the CDC.

World AIDS Day is a key moment of visibility and solidarity for the life-saving work our community does all year long. We’re proud to join organizations around the world to amplify the fight against HIV/AIDS on this important day.

Here are a few ways we’re committing to ending HIV/AIDS once and for all — and a few actions you can take, too:

  • Harlem United is on the front lines of the legislative fight for HIV/AIDS care and funding at all levels of government. Our ongoing work includes advocating for Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Plan to End AIDS in New York State by 2020 and advocating at the federal level as one of 42 members of the AIDS United Public Policy Committee.
  • We believe that housing is healthcare and that nobody should be denied a home of their own because of an HIV/AIDS diagnosis. Through our housing programs, we work to make sure as many New Yorkers as possible have access to safe, stable, and affordable housing.
  • Injection drug use accounts for about 10% of new AIDS diagnoses each year. We know that harm reduction, including syringe exchange, prevents new infections and saves lives.That’s why Harlem United distributed more than 200,000 clean syringes in 2015 to help stop the spread of HIV.
  • ACTION ALERT — Join your community: On Thursday, Dec. 1 at 11 a.m., we’re joining a group of New York community leaders, activists and elected officials to commemorate World AIDS Day and to dedicate the New York City AIDS Memorial. Community partnerships like these are crucial to supporting people with HIV/AIDS and to organizing for a cure. You can attend the event or watch a livestream via the NYC AIDS Memorial Facebook page.
  • ACTION ALERT — Get tested: Knowing your status is half the battle, and it can make a huge difference in preventing the spread of HIV. That’s why we offer free, confidential HIV testing at different locations throughout New York City. You can stop by one of our mobile testing sites or request an appointment to talk with a doctor about your HIV status.

We hope you’ll join us in the fight to end HIV/AIDS on World AIDS Day and every day!

How are you commemorating World AIDS Day? Let us know in the comments.