Monday, June 30, 2014

AIDS Walk Atlanta & 5K Run 2014 PSA

"SOULFUL POETRY" by Shavonne L. Jackson

At Night She Cried by Shavonne L. Jackson (2014)

A collection of Soulful expressions through poetry!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Politics drive hate, ignorance by Leonard Pitts

His family doesn't know if Zack actually heard any of it firsthand.
Maybe he was at that City Council meeting (some people swear he was) or maybe not. Either way, they figure he probably knew about the things that were said, how his neighbors in the small town of Norman, Okla., paraded to the microphone that evening in 2010 to denounce the proclamation of GLBT (Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender) History Month. They warned of a “slippery slope” to hate-crime laws, said gay people were out to “recruit” children, claimed 78 percent of all gay people have — and die from — sexually transmitted diseases.
That last claim especially angered Zack’s family. Chad Williams, a local pastor, says he got the statistic from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; a CDC spokeswoman says no such statistic exists.
Anyway, Zack was HIV-positive. His family didn't know that at the time. Indeed, they didn’t even know that Zack, who had moved out of state a month earlier, was back in town. He was that kind of kid: artistic, nature-loving, gay — and secretive. Zack kept a lot of things to himself. So the first they knew he had returned home was a week later, when his father found the 19-year-old in his childhood bedroom, dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
“Some things,” Van Harrington told a reporter for the Daily Oklahoman, “you can never un-see.”
The story is told in “Broken Heart Land,” a documentary premiering this week on The World Channel. Or you can stream it online at But be warned: Its lesson is not what you might think.
“I believe I have been always a conservative,” says Van Harrington, as you see him sit in his easy chair watching Fox. You think you know what that means, what it braces you to expect. But this conservative is also a grieving father who always accepted his gay son. “People make HIV a shameful thing,” he complains. “The people who are against gays, that’s how they rationalize part of their hatred.” Again, he is watching Fox as you hear him say this.
Zack’s mother, Nancy, says she is a Republican and, again, you think you know what that cues you to expect. But, as she tells me in a telephone interview, “I am just very questioning. I’ve met so many wonderful people since Zack died who are Democrats and I see more clearly their view and there are so many society issues that they are so concerned about and this is definitely one of them. ... I look at the Republican candidates and say there have to be candidates out there who are for equality. And they need to know that they have the support of people like me.”
Since Zack died, she says, “I question everything. I question ... the Bible and who wrote it and why they wrote it and is this just a power and control issue. I have very strong faith. I believe in God absolutely. The route which I go through those beliefs has probably changed. So many people accept the Bible unquestioningly, and I don’t know that you can really do that.”
“Republican,” “Democrat,” “conservative,” “liberal,” “faith” — we build boxes out of words and climb inside. Our politics have taught us to be hard and fast, stark and clear, black and white and never gray on issues like this, like abortion, like guns. But real life is messier and more complicated than our politics pretends. Most people, most days, just grapple for answers they can live with. And it is in that struggle that change is forged.
This is what “Broken Heart Land” captures, movingly. The film ends with an HIV-awareness march through the town where Zack lived and died. His sister, Nikki, says she’s come to realize that, “Awareness is the most loving, caring thing you can do. I guess it’s like coming out for me. Maybe we all have to come out.”
Indeed, maybe there is no maybe about it.
Leonard Pitts is a columnist for the Miami Herald;

Saturday, June 21, 2014



Independent film makers, Lux Pictures, have created a short film about life with HIV – meeting the friends, family and partner of beyondpositive’s editor-in-chief, Tom Hayes

Glen Scott of Lux Pictures
Glen Scott of Lux Pictures
The team at Lux Pictures, lead by director Glen Scott, were a group of four, final year Television and Broadcasting students from Portsmouth University.
The film follows beyondpositive‘s editor-in-chief, Tom Hayes, for a day, meeting his friends, partner and parents. It covers his diagnosis, disclosing his HIV status, treatment and his on going HIV activism & advocacy work.
Talking to beyondpositive, Glen explained why they’d chosen to focus on HIV for their final project:
“We found that most videos based on HIV are usually very clinical, focusing on statistics and facts. We wanted to shy away from that, strip it down to the basics and instead, simply tell a story.”
“Personally, before I visited I was under the impression that Tom would be on so much more medication than he actually was, I was surprised by just how far treatment of the virus has come in modern medicine today.”
“Through storytelling from several different perspectives, we wanted to put across the message that even when life doesn’t deal you the best hands, there’s always a way to turn it into something positive (if you’ll pardon the pun).”
The four members of the Lux Pictures team were: Glen Scott (director), Wayne Pentony (producer), Chris Harkus (camera) and Oliver Ing (sound & graphics).
The film, which you can watch below, will also be screened at the beyondpositivebirthday event in August.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Amazon Fire Phone - 13MP Camera, 32GB - Shop Now

Amazon Fire Phone - 13MP Camera, 32GB - Shop Now:

Apps & More

'via Blog this'

My Life After Now

Book Description

 April 2, 2013

Fans of Glee and Rent will love this story of unflinching honesty and unfaltering compassion.

The last thing Lucy ever expected was to end up as another teen statistic.

Lucy had a plan: become a Broadway star, start a life with her leading man Ty, make her family proud. But in a matter of days, Lucy loses Ty, her starring role, and her parents drop a bomb she never saw coming.

Suddenly, it's all too much--she wants out. Out of her house, out of her head, out of her life. She wants to be a new Lucy. So she does something the old Lucy would never dream of.

And now her life will never be the same. What will she tell her friends? How will she face her family? Off script and without the comforts of her simple high school problems, Lucy must figure out how to live, and even embrace, her new life.

Now...every moment is a gift. Because now she might not have many moments left

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up-Lucy is having the worst two weeks in her 16 years. Her longtime boyfriend cheats on her and starts dating her rival, who wins the role of Juliet, which Lucy spent most of the summer rehearsing. Then Lucy's mom arrives unexpectedly and wants to stay with her and her dads. The teen decides that a night out on the town, where she can forget everything, is just what she needs. She and her friends go to New York, where they drink too much, and Lucy goes home with a guy she doesn't know. A month later, when things have sort of calmed down, she realizes that one night could have had severe consequences. She tests positive for HIV, and her life spirals out of control as she tries to hide the reality from her parents and friends. She can't handle the pressure of the disease for long, though, before her secret is out. Although a few elements in this plot seem unrealistic, like her parents' reaction, most ring true. Lucy struggles with the reality of being HIV positive-especially since she doesn't feel sick-and knowing how people will treat her when they find out. There are few books about HIV-positive teenagers, and this is a poignant story. HIV/AIDS resources and facts are appended, along with book discussion questions.-Natalie Struecker, Rock Island Public Library, ILĪ±(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


"Debut author Verdi paints Lucy's devastation and her tangled emotions with honesty and compassion. The reactions of those in Lucy's life are believable as well, from a newfound love interest, who shies away from touching her, to the fierce devotion of her fathers, who are ready to fight when Lucy wants to give up. Information about living with HIV is peppered throughout, but Verdi's novel never preaches, instead telling Lucy's story with realism and hope." - Publishers Weekly

"Verdi forces her readers to face Lucy's dilemma with unflinching honesty and unfaltering compassion. Her complex and relevant story addresses issues that every teen faces. She deftly deals with the controversial topics of sex education in schools and prejudice against people who receive an HIV diagnosis. A gem of a novel." - RT Book Reviews

"Lucy's journey toward accepting her diagnosis is realistically handled, complete with highs and lows." - Kirkus

"My Life After Now is one of those books that wakes you up and demands your attention. It weaves light scenes and heavy scenes and really makes you think, not only about being careful, but also how you live your life in general. " - My Heart Hearts Books

"I applaud Jessica Verdi for writing this book, and hope that it will be a book that will be in every library and classroom. That it can be a book where teens who end up contracting this virus, can turn to this book for some guidance on where to go and who to talk to. I loved that as the story progressed, the author does leave a trail of steps that teens can take should they feel that they may need to be tested. I loved all the raw emotion found in these pages, and how in the end, there is always hope." - Chapter By Chapter

"Lucy is a strong, beautiful heroine. There's no doubt that this book has a heavy subject matter, but Verdi does such a wonderful job of balancing the HIV part with the happier parts of life. Lucy has a life before and after she's infected and that life is wonderful. I love the theater parts and I love how something like that is there for her to come back to even after she has such a hard time. I also appreciated the authenticity in the conclusion where not everything is wrapped up and not everyone ends up happily ever after. I just strongly recommend this book because I know I walked away understanding more about people who have HIV and I felt a little bit like I made a new friend in Lucy. " - In the Best Worlds

"What I loved the most about this book is how inspiring it is. Lucy pushes people away from her at first, but eventually she is able to pull through her situation thanks to the people around her, especially Evan, who becomes an important person in her life. My Life After Now is a wonderful, touching story that portrays Lucy's devastation and her tangled emotions with honesty. The book is about acceptance and learning to live your life with your illness. It brings every single perspective of a life changes after a positive HIV test" - Imaginary Reads

"This book was crazy good is so many ways . . .What I love about Jessica's writing is she keeps it real. Real reactions. Real misunderstandings. Real fears shown by uninfected people . . .Cancer is a killer, but so is HIV/AIDS. It just doesn't get as much air time. That is why I would LOVE beyond LOVE to see this book saturating schools, being a part of their reading plan. I think it would save lives." - Novels on the Run

"My Life After Now is a remarkable and beautifully written story that brings a lot of awareness to teenagers about HIV. Jessica Verdi's work is up their with the likes of Janet Gutler - who also brings a lot of awareness out through her writing. " - Book Passion for Life

"I find it amazing when a book can be both a great read and an eye opener at the same time. What I loved the most about this book, though, is how inspiring it is." - Xpresso Reads

From the Back Cover

Lucy just had the worst week ever. Seriously, mega bad. And suddenly, it's all too much--she wants out. Out of her house, out of her head, out of her life. She wants to be a whole new Lucy. So she does something the old Lucy would never dream of. 
And now her life will never be the same. Now, how will she be able to have a boyfriend? What will she tell her friends? How will she face her family? Now, every moment is a precious gift. She never thought being positive could be so negative. But now, everything's different...because now she's living with HIV.

About the Author

Jessica Verdi lives in Brooklyn, NY and received her MFA in Writing for Children from The New School. Her favorite pastimes include singing showtunes at the top of her lungs (much to her husband's chagrin), watching cheesy TV, and scoring awesome non-leather shoes in a size 5. She's still trying to figure out a way to put her uncanny ability to remember both song lyrics and the intricacies of vampire lore to good use. Visit Jess at

My Life After Now

Monday, June 16, 2014

Black AIDS Institute Sponsors Alabama Testing Tour to Commemorate National HIV Testing Day

Black AIDS Institute Sponsors Alabama Testing Tour to Commemorate National HIV Testing Day
Friday, June 27th, is National HIV Testing Day. In response to the magnitude of the AIDS epidemic in Black America and the expanding HIV/AIDS health disparities between Black Americans and other racial ethnic groups, the Black AIDS Institute and Alabama Department of Public Health are sponsoring a testing tour with stops in Montgomery (June 25th); Selma (June 26th) and Birmingham (June 27th). In addition to free HIV testing, there will be free food, life-saving information and giveaways.
35 years into this epidemic, there are still alarming rates of new HIV infections in this country. Roughly 50,000 Americans are infected with HIV every year and 69 percent are Black. In Alabama, the HIV epidemic continues to disproportionately affect African Americans. During 2012, the rate of HIV diagnosed among Black men was 6.5 times that of White men, with 65% of newly diagnosed males identifying as Black. The difference was even more pronounced among African American women, who are 12.5 as likely to become infected with HIV as White women, with 80% of newly diagnosed females identifying as Black. During 2012, 85% of newly diagnosed youth (ages 13-19) were Black. Black gay and bisexual men in Alabama accounted for 35% of new HIV diagnoses in Alabama.
Despite these statistics, tremendous advances have been made towards ending the AIDS epidemic but it all begins with each and every Alabamian knowing his or her HIV status.
On Wednesday, June 25th (in Montgomery), please come to: Alabama State University J. Garrick Hardy Student Services Center S. University Drive, adjacent to Acadome 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
On Thursday, June 26th (in Selma), please come to: Selma Convention Center 211 Washington Street Selma, Alabama 36701 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
On Friday, June 27th (in Birmingham), please come to: Smithfield Court Residential Council of the Birmingham District 421 8th Avenue North Birmingham, AL 35204 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.
For more information about National Black AIDS Awareness Day, call (213) 353-3610 or email
About The Black AIDS Institute Founded in May 1999, The Black AIDS Institute is the only national HIV/AIDS think tank in the United States focused exclusively on Black people. The Institute's mission is to stop the AIDS pandemic in Black communities by engaging and mobilizing Black institutions, leaders and individuals in efforts to confront HIV. The Institute interprets public- and private-sector HIV policies, conducts trainings, offers technical assistance, disseminates information and provides advocacy and mobilization from a uniquely and unapologetically Black point of view.

Saturday, June 14, 2014


Study Demonstrates Some Plans Put Every HIV Drug on Highest Tier,Stick Beneficiaries with Costs
Washington, DC – A study released this week conducted by Avalere Health offers growing evidence that certain plans offered through the marketplace are discriminating against people with HIV/AIDS and other health conditions by placing every drug in certain classes, including generics, on the highest tier and charging beneficiaries exorbitant amounts in cost-sharing. 
In an analysis of 123 plans from all states, Avalere found that of the four classes of HIV drugs, between 27% and 39% of the plans placed every HIV drug, including generics, on the highest tiers, where patients are charged 30% or more in co-insurance.  Of those plans, most are charging patients more than 40% co-insurance. [See graphic.]
“We want the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to work, and we want it to work for people living with HIV/AIDS and others with chronic health conditions,” said Carl Schmid, Deputy Executive, The AIDS Institute. “But shifting the cost of medications to the patients is not only blatant discrimination but can lead to poorer health outcomes, since beneficiaries will not be able to afford and access their life-saving medications.”
Recently The AIDS Institute, along with the National Health Law Program, filed a discrimination complaint against four plans in Florida for placing every HIV drug, including generics, on the highest tiers.  The Avalere analysis demonstrates that this practice is happening across the country and not only impacts HIV drugs, but other classes of medications that are important to maintaining the health of so many others.
“Plans can’t shift all the medication costs to beneficiaries,” added Michael Ruppal, Executive Director, The AIDS Institute.  “We are hearing stories from all over the country of patients who are shocked by their high drug costs when they pick up their medications.  They had no idea what their costs would be because the plans merely state it will be a certain percentage. They have no idea that a 50% co-insurance could translate into over $1,000.”
The AIDS Institute is recommending the Obama Administration take the following actions to address these growing concerns: 1) Review plans and enforce the ACA non-discrimination protections in order to weed out the bad plans; 2) Limit patient cost-sharing for medications to nominal amounts such as $10, $20, or $50 per drug, consistent with typical  employer-based and marketplace plans; and 3) Require plans  to disclose clearly and fully the  medication costs for patients, detailing real amounts the patient is expected to pay, rather than hiding these cost burdens with percentages.
Schmid concluded, “We want the ACA to work, but we have identified some serious issues as it relates to accessing medications.  Given the importance of prescription drugs in securing better health outcomes, we trust they will be addressed.”

Best Father's Day 2014 Freebies and Deals June 14, 2014 By SUSANNA KIM

If your dad or family does not enjoy free or cheap things, stop reading. But if they wouldn't mind some free pasta or coffee, then read on.
Here are some deals for Father's Day 2014 weekend.
Of course, take note of the fine print and call a business ahead to check if your location is participating and that supplies have lasted.
1. Starbucks via Groupon
Get a $10 Starbucks eGift card for $5 through Groupon. Expires Dec. 31, 2014. Limit 1 per person.
DealNews points out a number of free deals, including one at The Spaghetti Warehouse Restaurant. Dads eat free at Spaghetti Warehouse on Sunday, with no coupon needed.
On Sunday only, use a coupon for a "Buy One Get One Free" deal for any barbecue ribs individual meal.
4. Firehouse Subs
On Sunday, get a free medium sub when you purchase a sub, chips and medium drink, as posted on Firehouse Subs' Facebook page on Thursday.
When you dine-in for Father's Day brunch on Sunday, get a free bottle of maple syrup.
6. BJ's Restaurant and Brewhouse
This restaurant chain is offering a free limited edition pint glass for every day on Saturday and Sunday, Deal News points out via BJ's Facebook page. The company recently introduced an app feature that allows you to order before you dine-in and mobile pay. You also get $5 off $20 when you use "Dine-in Order Ahead" or mobile pay. Oh and June 17, Tuesday, happens to be "Free Pizookie Day," when the restaurant gives away giant cookies with scoops of ice cream.
DealNews notes, "With these printable coupons in tow, you can pick up a hoard of free tools and accessories to help bulk out that toolbox even if you intend to ignore that long list of odd jobs."
8. CVS Photo Collage
CVS Photo is offering a 8" x 10" Personalized Photo Collage Print for $4.49, which ends Saturday. Use the coupon code "DADCOLLAGE." Opt for free in-store pickup to avoid the $5.99 shipping charge, DealNews said.
9. TGI Friday's
Through Sunday, buy one adult entree, get one free (with the purchase of two beverages) if you use a coupon.
10. Fandango
Visa Signature cardholders can get a free Friday Fandango movie ticket after purchasing one, through August 8.
Use a coupon through June 25 for a free sandwich after the purchase of one.
12. Hooters
On Sunday, families can advantage of Hooters' buy 10, get 10 free wings deal exclusive to dads. And if you can't dine-in, get $5 in Dad's Bonus Bucks with the purchase of a $25 gift certificate for dad.
No coupon required. On Sunday, just say "BFD" to get a free burger for the father in your life after the purchase of another burger.
14. Wendy's
While not giving out freebies to customers, participating Wendy's restaurants will donate 50 cents from the sale of every Frosty product to support the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, which helps find permanent families for the more than 134,000 children in foster care waiting for adoption in North America. The charitable program is part of Wendy's Father's Day Frosty Weekend on Saturday and Sunday.

Friday, June 13, 2014

The Startling Link Between Dating Apps And STI Risk

Smartphone social apps like Grindr, Scruff and Recon are associated with a greater risk for STIs like gonorrhea and chlamydia among gay and bisexual men, according to a new study conducted by the Los Angeles LGBT Center, a non-profit organization in Los Angeles, Calif.
Compared with men who met partners online or in person, men who used social apps had 25 percent greater odds of being infected with gonorrhea and 37 percent greater odds of being infected with chlamydia, the study found. However, there seemed to be no difference between the groups when it came to syphilis or HIV infection.
"As technology has benefits, it also has certain risks," said Matt Beymer, the lead researcher and an epidemiologist at the Los Angeles LGBT Center. "We want to educate gay and bisexual men about the potential risks that they may face with these apps."
The study, published online Thursday in the journal Sexually Transmitted Infections, is an analysis of the STI testing results of 7,184 men, compared with their answers on a questionnaire about their sex lives and recreational drug use. Thirty-four percent of study participants met partners through in-person social networking only, while 30 percent met partners using a combination of the Internet and in-person social networking. The remaining 36 percent met partners using a combination of in-person, online and social app networking.
According to Beymer's study, the social app users tended to be either white or Asian, well-educated and under 40 years old. While drug use wasn't the main focus of the study, Beymer also found that men who used social apps were also more likely to use recreational drugs like cocaine and ecstasy.
Because Beymer collected the data from one STI testing center in Los Angeles between 2011 and 2013, he acknowledges that his findings may not reflect men in other cities, or men who don't regularly get checked for STIs. It's also important to point out that the study doesn't establish cause or a timeline -- in other words, using the smartphone apps didn't simply result in an STI.
The findings show that even though these apps make meeting sexual partners more efficient, they could also have "the unintended effect" of creating a network of individuals that are at higher risk to contract STIs, wrote Beymer in his study.
"Our ultimate goal is not to stigmatize these apps or stigmatize in general," Beymer explained to HuffPost. "We just really want gay and bisexual men to love carefully and love safely."
Social apps like Grindr have GPS (global positioning system) technology that enables people to identify users within their immediate vicinity, and they are immensely popular among the gay community. Grindr, a pioneer in its space, launched in 2009 and now boasts over 10 million user downloads, according to the company. Los Angeles is the No. 2 U.S. metro area with the most Grindr users, after New York.
Grindr didn't comment on the study to HuffPost, but said in a statement that the company "is highly committed to promoting safe sex within the community and strongly encourages our users to engage in safe sex practices, get tested and know their HIV status." The statement also pointed to the company's health page, which gives users tips on how to get tested for STDs and how to have safer sex.
Of course, technology can also help combat STI rates, too. Sean Young, Ph.D., founder of the Center for Digital Behavior at UCLA, has found that social media sites like Facebook can be an important forum for men to discuss topics surrounding HIV, such as stigma and prevention, as well as order HIV test kits.
His 2013 study, which focused mostly on Latino and African-American men in Los Angeles, concluded that participants who posted about HIV prevention and testing in a secret HIV prevention Facebook group, as opposed to a general public health Facebook group, were more likely to post about HIV topics like prevention, testing, knowledge, stigma and advocacy. And study participants who posted about prevention and testing on Facebook had over 11 times the odds of requesting an HIV testing kit than participants who did not discuss those topics.
Young was not part of Beymer's study about social GPS apps, but praised it for highlighting the need for public health departments to research and understand technology that could influence sexual health on a large scale. Young also said the study's findings have a practical takeaway for individuals, too.
"People want easy ways to romantically and sexually connect with each other. If a technology exists that can make this process more efficient, men will discover and use it," Young wrote in an email to HuffPost. "To maintain sexual health, men using these technologies should therefore be especially knowledgeable and aware of STI risks and ways to be safe."

written by,

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

HOMOPHOBIA (Gay Themed Short Film)

HIV High Risk Target Group: Adolescent and Young Adult African American Males

HIV High Risk Target Group: Adolescent and Young Adult African American Males

Revised 06.05.2014 1
HIV Infections Among Adolescent and Young Adult African American Males

Similar to other states, Alabama is experiencing a downward shift in the age distribution of newly
diagnosed HIV infections as adolescents and young adults age 15-29 years are now the most affected
age group (Figure 1). Prior to 2007, the majority of newly diagnosed HIV infections were reported
among 30-45 year olds. This downward shift in Alabama’s newly diagnosed HIV population calls for
increased prevention efforts targeting a younger population. Effective HIV prevention efforts require
identification of at risk target groups within Alabama’s adolescent and young adult population.

Figure 1. Trends in Newly Diagnosed HIV Cases by Age Group, Alabama 2004-2013

Adolescents and young adults (15-29 years) are twice as likely to be infected with HIV as the average
Alabama resident (Table 1). During 2012, the rate of HIV infection was 30.3 per 100,000 Alabama
residents age 15-29 years compared to 13.9 per 100,000 residents of any age. Adolescents and young
adults age 15-29 years represented nearly one-half of all newly diagnosed cases during 2012 (45%) and
2013 (47%), compared to only 13 percent of the total population of persons living with HIV infection as
of December 31, 2013. Without proper intervention, the alarming rate of new infections among
adolescents and young adults can be expected to significantly increase the total number of persons
living with HIV infection in Alabama as HIV positive individuals are becoming infected at a younger age
and living longer due to antiretroviral therapy.

4 2
Table 1. HIV Infection Rates by Age Group, Alabama 2012-2013
 Newly Diagnosed, 2012 Newly Diagnosed, 2013† Persons Living with HIV, 2013‡
Age Group (Years) Number (%) Rate Number (%) Rate Number (%) Rate
0-14 5 (0.8) 0.5 - - 76 (0.6) 8.1
15-29 299 (44.7) 30.3 273 (47.2) 27.7 1657 (13.4) 167.9
30-44 213 (31.8) 23.3 168 (29.2) 18.4 3973 (32.2) 434.6
45-59 128 (19.1) 12.8 108 (18.7) 10.8 5335 (43.2) 533.0
≥60 25 (3.7) 2.5 30 (5.2) 3.0 1313 (10.6) 133.0
 Statewide Total 670 (100) 13.9 579 (100) 12.0 12354 (100) 256.2
Source: Alabama Department of Public Health, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control.
Note: Rates per 100,000 Alabama residents in each age group reported in United States Census Bureau, 2012 Population Estimates. †2013 data
remain incomplete due to delayed reporting; data will be finalized December 31, 2014. ‡Age groups among persons living with HIV as of
December 31, 2013 represent current age.

African American males represent the majority of infections among adolescents and young adults age
15-29 years, with 10 times the risk of becoming infected with HIV as the average Alabama resident in
2012 (137.7 compared to 13.9, Tables 1 and 2). African American males 15-29 years old were 11 times
more likely to become infected with HIV than white males the same age (Table 2). The risk was even
more pronounced among African American females, who were nearly 15 times as likely to become
infected with HIV as white females 15-29 years old during 2012. The infection rate among all African
American males age 15-29 years living with HIV infection as of December 31, 2013 was 3 times the rate
of all persons living with HIV infection diagnosed in Alabama (723.1 compared to 256.2, Tables 1 and 2).

Table 2. HIV Infection Rates Among Adolescents and Young Adults (15-29 Years) by Race, Alabama 2012-2013
 Newly Diagnosed, 2012 Newly Diagnosed, 2013† Persons Living with HIV, 2013‡
Characteristics Number (%) Rate Number (%) Rate Number (%) Rate
African Americans 240 (80.6) 78.7 218 (79.9) 71.5 1317 (79.5) 431.9
 Males 203 (67.9) 137.7 189 (69.2) 128.2 1066 (64.3) 723.1
 Females 37 (12.4) 23.5 29 (10.6) 18.4 251 (15.2) 159.4
Whites 46 (15.4) 7.2 47 (17.2) 7.4 249 (15.0) 38.9
 Males 41 (13.7) 12.6 40 (14.7) 12.3 203 (12.3) 62.3
 Females 5 (1.7) 1.6 7 (2.6) 2.2 46 (2.8) 14.7
All Races 299 (100) 30.3 273 (100) 27.7 1657 (100) 167.9
Source: Alabama Department of Public Health, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control.
Note: Rates per 100,000 Alabama residents age 15-29 years by race reported in United States Census Bureau, 2012 Population Estimates.
†2013 data remain incomplete due to delayed reporting; data will be finalized December 31, 2014. ‡Persons living with HIV as of December 31,
2013 are currently aged 15-29 years.

Among adolescent and young adult African American males 15-29 years old, sex with another male is
the predominant risk factor reported among newly diagnosed HIV infections (Figure 2). Recent trends
over the previous decade show an alarming increase in the number of HIV infections among African
American males 15-29 years old reporting sex with another male. Identification of African American
men who have sex with men (MSM) age 15-29 years as a high risk target group should guide prevention
efforts. Effective HIV treatment and prevention programs must focus on these individuals to prevent
future HIV infections.

HIV High Risk Target Group: Adolescent and Young Adult African American Males

Revised 06.05.2014 3
Figure 2. Trends in Newly Diagnosed HIV Cases Among African American Males (Age 15-29 Years) by Mode of
Exposure, Alabama 2004-2013

As a largely rural state, some Alabama counties have less than 100 African American males age 15-29
years. To protect the privacy of HIV-positive individuals within this group, statistics are limited to Public
Health Areas (Table 3). It should be noted that HIV-positive African American males 15-29 years old are
represented throughout the state, with many individuals frequently traveling between jurisdictions.
Statewide HIV treatment and prevention efforts should be launched to prevent future HIV infections.

Table 3. HIV Infection Rates Among African American Adolescents and Young Adult Males (15-29 Years) by Public
Health Area (PHA), Alabama 2012-2013
 Newly Diagnosed, 2012 Newly Diagnosed, 2013† Persons Living with HIV, 2013‡
Public Health Area Number (%) Rate Number (%) Rate Number (%) Rate
PHA 1 2 (1.0) 71.4 - - 4 (0.4) 142.9
PHA 2 23 (11.3) 150.0 12 (6.4) 78.2 98 (9.2) 638.7
PHA 3 26 (12.8) 237.1 21 (11.1) 191.5 77 (7.2) 702.2
PHA 4 54 (26.6) 181.9 50 (26.5) 168.4 297 (27.9) 1000.5
PHA 5 2 (1.0) 35.6 2 (1.1) 35.6 14 (1.3) 249.1
PHA 6 6 (3.0) 67.4 10 (5.3) 112.4 47 (4.4) 528.1
PHA 7 1 (0.5) 11.0 11 (5.8) 120.6 33 (3.1) 361.8
PHA 8 49 (24.1) 159.2 41 (21.7) 133.2 267 (25.1) 867.2
PHA 9 6 (3.0) 72.9 4 (2.2) 48.6 31 (2.9) 376.9
PHA 10 12 (5.9) 124.9 8 (4.2) 83.3 55 (5.2) 572.4
PHA 11 22 (10.8) 138.3 30 (15.9) 188.5 143 (13.4) 898.6
Statewide 203 (100) 137.7 189 (100) 128.2 1066 (100) 723.1
Source: Alabama Department of Public Health, Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control.
Note: Rates per 100,000 African American males age 15-29 years residing in Alabama by public health area reported in United States Census
Bureau, 2012 Population Estimates. †2013 data remain incomplete due to delayed reporting; data will be finalized December 31, 2014.
‡Persons living with HIV as of December 31, 2013 are currently age 15-29 years.

This is awesomely so true!

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Monday, June 9, 2014


Pills N Potions - Pills N Potions - Single
Pills N Potions - Single, Nicki Minaj


Influenced by the unpredictable rhymes of Missy Elliot along with the sexually charged attitudes of Lil' Kim and Foxy Brown, Queens native Nicki Minaj was discovered thanks to her MySpace page. It was there that Dirty Money Entertainment CEO Fendi first heard her ability to freestyle and first laid eyes on her steamy set of promo shots. With killer curves she was obviously proud to flaunt, plus a background in the performing arts thanks to the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music and Art (the school that had inspired the movie Fame), Minaj was a perfect fit for Fendi's urban DVD magazine The Come Up. She appeared in numerous volumes, including number 11, which spotlighted her future label boss, superstar rapper Lil Wayne. Through Fendi, Wayne contacted Minaj and signed her to his Young Money label. They began to build her career through mixtapes like Lil Wayne's Dedication 3 and Minaj's own Sucka Free. Meanwhile, appearances on various remixes — everything from T.I.'s "No Matter What" to Jeffree Star's club track "Cupcakes Taste Like Violence" — helped spread the word.
The big breakthrough for Minaj came when Wayne added his rhymes to her "High as a Kite" single, a mixtape favorite in 2008. The year 2009 would see more guest appearances and mixtapes, including the Beam Me Up Scotty mixtape, featuring the street single "I Get Crazy." In 2010, the singles "Your Love" and "Check It Out" preceded the release of her official debut album, Pink Friday, which debuted that November at number two on the Billboard 200 and went platinum. She earned a handful of 2011 Grammy nominations, including Best New Artist, Best Rap Album, and Best Rap Performance. An all-out media blitz followed between albums with extravagant performances at award shows across the globe, an appearance as a musical guest on Saturday Night Live, and joining Madonna — alongside M.I.A. — for her Super Bowl XLVI halftime show.
In early 2012, the Eurodance-influenced single "Starships" signaled the coming of her official sophomore effort, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded, an album built around her devil-may-care alter ego "Roman Zolanski." Guest artists included Nas, Lil Wayne, Rick Ross, Chris Brown, and Beenie Man, while production came from the likes of RedOne, Dr. Luke, and Ke'Noe. The album hit number one on the U.S. album charts, driven by a Top Ten showing for "Starships." "Pound the Alarm," and "Va Va Voom" also reached the Top 40. By the end of 2012, Minaj had been announced as a judge for the twelfth season of American Idol, although she left at the end of the season. It hardly affected her success, as she set two career records during 2013: most-charted female rapper in the history of Billboard's singles chart, and the first person to win Best Female Hip-Hop Artist at the BET Awards four times in a row. She also announced that her third studio album, tentatively titled The Pink Print, would appear in 2014. First single "Lookin Ass" featured on the Young Money compilation Rise of an Empire, released in March.

Friday, June 6, 2014


Stay With Me - In the Lonely Hour

In the Lonely Hour (Deluxe Version), Sam Smith


Born: 1992 in London, England
Genre: Pop
Years Active: '10s
Although the first solo single from soul-inspired, London-born artist Sam Smith was issued in early 2013, it was his soaring vocal contribution to Disclosure's October 2012 U.K. garage track "Latch" that brought him to most people's attention. For most of his teens, Smith balanced study with music, soaking in the raw and passionate approach to performance exemplified by his favorite artists at that time such as Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, and Chaka Khan. "Latch" hit the upper reaches of the U.K...

Thursday, June 5, 2014


Become self-empowered learn to read you 

blood lab results it helps me catch 

mistakes or when something is great 

news. You will feel a relief if you do an 

you will feel stronger!

With GODS help this is how im still here 

over 30 yrs later!



Breastfeeding while living with HIV: Nonhlanhla's story


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

June 5 is the First National Long Term HIV Survivors Day

In 1983, while he was still in his 20s, Tez Anderson found out that he was HIV-positive. Although doctors told him he only had two years to live, somewhere along the way he turned 50. Faced with the prospect of a future he hadn't planned for, Anderson fell into a deep depression. When he finally realized that he wasn't the only one dealing with "AIDS Survivor Syndrome," he started Long Term HIV Survivors Day, the first of which will be held on June 5.

"What I hear most is that I’m not the only one," said Anderson. "I thought I was going crazy, and was ashamed of it. But once I began talking about my experience, I realized I was on to something."

Anderson’s downward spiral came with depression, insomnia and a lot of anger. He was online planning out his suicide when he discovered that his symptoms were a lot like PTSD. He called it AIDS Survivor Syndrome (ASS), and soon, many other long-term survivors began sharing similar stories.

"Part of my breakdown was that I was such an asshole about it, I had alienated all of my friends," said Anderson. He called up a few that he had worked with in ACT Up years before, and they helped him throw a Town Hall event in San Francisco last September.

"I invited those we knew to talk about their experiences," said Anderson, "and 200 people showed up. It was like they were at a revival! There were a lot of people who were HIV-positive, but also many who were HIV-negative, who were dealing with the trauma of losing all of our friends and lovers for two decades. The first 20 years of AIDS were devastating to our community, and you didn't have to be positive to experience that loss and repeated grief."

Anderson kept throwing events, including a public poll, programming, a social, meditation, weekend retreats and four more Town Hall events. He witnessed people like him, transformed by the knowledge that they weren't alone in this.

"A large percentage of my cohorts were very isolated, very much angry, and then quiet. They became recluses," said Anderson. "Some of these people were scared to come to the big events, so they came to our Saturday morning coffee, where there are only about a dozen people. They might not say anything at first, but soon, they are ready to come to a Town Hall, and then to volunteer, and then to come out of their shell. A substantial number of people participated, and experienced a lessening of their symptoms."

Anderson created a website for the event and last month, filed paperwork to make the organization a non-profit. And now, he is calling for others across the country to come together and plan their own Long-Term survivors day, under the theme of "We’re Still Here."

"I encourage people to do what’s appropriate for their community," said Anderson. "The first-ever national Long Term Survivors Day is planned for June 5, because this was the date in 1981 that the Morbidity and Mortality report was released that first noted HIV. We chose that day as the day that AIDS awareness began."

AIDS Survivor Summit

In San Francisco on June 5, Anderson and his team will hold the inaugural AIDS Survivor Summit at their LGBT Center. The event is free, but tickets are required; click here.

The event will commence at 10:45 a.m. when buses will pick up participants from the Castro and transport them to the National AIDS Memorial Grove. Once there, Gregg Cassin will host the Healing Circle Ceremony, honoring those lost to the epidemic and committing to envision the future they never imagined. Dignitaries will share speeches, and there will be a tree planting ceremony to honor survivors.

At 12:30 p.m., they’ll depart the Grove for the AIDS Survivors Summit at the San Francisco Gay Center. A day of talks, information and special events is planned.

A Community Expo will be held on the second floor, featuring Bay Area AIDS organizations sharing information about they way they serve, or plan to serve, long-term survivors -- defined as those who came of age in the 1980s and 1990s, when the community around them was under siege both HIV-positive and negative.

There will be food at various intervals, and in the evening, staff members will host a pre-Pride social to strengthen community through connection. In addition, the HIV Story Project will bring Generations HIV, an interactive video storytelling booth, to the Center from June 5-21 to capture the stories of long-term survivors.

"It is a day to celebrate our survival and begin envisioning the future we never imagined," said Anderson. "The first decades of our adulthood were overwhelmingly consumed with illness, death and fear. Now it is up to us to ensure that the next decades are the best they can be. The least we can do is afford survivors the respect they have earned and acknowledge them as elders, teachers and leaders."

Anderson is asking long-term survivors to consider how they want the next years to look and to begin laying the groundwork for it now. On June 5, they will work under the mission statement, "Let’s Kick Ass," and fire up a grassroots movement of long-term survivors, positive and negative, honoring the unique and profound experience of living through the AIDS epidemic. On that day they will unveil a new long-term survivor declaration and call for national sign-ons.

"We’re dedicated to reclaiming our lives, ending isolation and envisioning a future we never dreamed of, while paving the way for a bright and purposeful future for those of us who endured such a painful past," said Anderson.

Events to Be Held Across the Nation

The movement that Anderson started in San Francisco has already caught on in New York and Portland, Oregon. In New York City, Acria is observing June 5; in Portland, survivors will gather at Hobo’s Restaurant and Seattle will hold a potluck
meet and greet at the Bastyr Immune Wellness Clinic.

And in Grinnell, Iowa, survivors will observe the inaugural Long-Term HIV Survivors Day at the closing of the first-ever HIV is Not a Crime Conference at Grinnell College June 2 to 5.

"I commend Tez Anderson and all the long-term survivors in San Francisco who have initiated and developed this long overdue commemoration of those of us who have lived with HIV for so long," said Sean Strub of the SERO Project. "There is a unique wisdom long-term survivors have earned, the hard way, and too often we have been cast aside, ignored or treated like freaks simply because we’re still here. Recognizing and valuing what we have learned and what we can contribute to combating HIV today is very, very important."