Can having HIV make you poor? Can being poor make you more likely to get HIV?
Unfortunately, the answer to both questions is too often “yes.”
A lot of tough conversations need to be had about the AIDS crisis and poverty if we are to make headway on either one. Policymakers need to hear about the ways in which economic deprivation can limit people’s ability to protect themselves from HIV. They need to hear how the design of medical services, ADAP, and housing programs for people living with HIV/AIDS can incentivize staying poor or getting sick in order to be eligible for much-needed benefits. They need to hear how women in particular are impacted by economic disparities relating to HIV. They need to hear it from you.
Check out this fact sheet on HIV and economic justice from PWN, the Positive Women’s Network. Their talking points are clear and easy to digest, without oversimplifying the complex relationship between the AIDS crisis and poverty.
Read it, remember it: the more we can articulate the ways in which HIV-positive people are set up to fail economically, the stronger the movement for economic and HIV prevention justice becomes.
Read more fact sheets and policy papers from PWN here, or visit their homepage.
Today’s post will highlight the recently launched the Future of Sex Ed website, a collaborative effort developed by Advocates for Youth, ANSWER, and SIECUS.
The lessons AIDS advocates can draw from this website are two fold. First: content. The site provides an excellent and in-depth overview of sex education – an issue that is intrinsically related to HIV prevention. Here advocates can easily access all of the information needed to advocate for comprehensive sex ed, including primers on public education and toolkits for states and communities. Its a great resource for anyone interested in this issue.
The second lesson: form. The partner organizations behind the website did a wonderful job of developing a simple, clean website that’s intuitive and easy to navigate. They provide a range of resources which allows site visitors to find the right fit for their needs. For those seeking basic information, there are factsheets. For those looking to do something more, there is a comprehensive toolkit for advocates or information on professional development opportunities.
Overall, Future of Sex Ed is a great example of how to execute an issue-specific site that gives interested advocates a menu of options to get involved.
Check it out at: futureofsexed.org
Perhaps more so than any other issue area, AIDS advocacy requires delivering lots of messages about who is most impacted by the epidemic and where disparities call us to action.
In order to be sure these messages are accurate, AIDS advocates must be comfortable talking about epidemiology, which is the scientific study of disease distribution and the factors that cause disease to spread in a community. The general public looks to us to understand what the numbers produced by the CDC and other public health authorities mean and to interpret what actions are necessary in response. We need to get it right.
This presentation goes through, in an accessible and non-technical way, the epidemilogical concepts most commonly used in AIDS advocacy. Its a great resource for old hands looking to brush up their chops or newcomers seeking to survey the landscape.
Check it out!