This post is made possible by support from the We Can Stop HIV One Conversation at a Time campaign. All opinions are my own.
I remember the 80's where HIV was something we were all talking about, perhaps not because we wanted to but because we had to. In recent years the conversation has subsided to a point where many are ill informed or might not really have info on it at all. HIV is still a very scary and real threat especially in the Latino community. HIV is real as ever, we need to talk about it more, it is ONE CONVERSATION that must be had.
I want to share some statistics with you:
- There are more than 1.1 million people living with HIV in the United States.
- About 50,000 people become infected with HIV per year.
- Latinos count for 21% of new these yearly infections.
- That is an estimated 1 in 36 Hispanic/Latino men and 1 in 106 Hispanic/Latina.
- The rate of new HIV infections among Hispanic men is almost three times that among white men, with gay and bisexual men particularly affected.
- The rate of new HIV infections among Hispanic women is more than four times that of white women.
Have you talked to your kids about HIV and how it can be prevented? It's not an easy conversation I can attest to that, I am not the most open person when it comes to talking with my girls about sex. This comes from that Mexican background, my mom NEVER talked to us about sex, about our periods or even about pregnancy. But these are all things that happen, just like getting HIV can happen. As parents, it is up to us to protect our kids, not matter how uncomfortable, this could literally be a life or death situation. Getting informed, taking to our kids, keeping the conversation open with others, these are ways that we can protect ourselves and those we love.
Get informed about HIV:
One Conversation at a Time is collaborating with AltaMed Healthcare Services to help promote Sin Vergüenza, a suspenseful telenovela web series, as a way to encourage Hispanic/Latino families and friends to have meaningful conversations about HIV. Sin Vergüenza addresses difficult issues that many Hispanic/Latino families face when coping with HIV. Watching this with your family and sharing it with others is a great way to get the conversation started.
This week I will reiterate the conversation with my family. I will also do what I can to get the Latino Community informed about our disproportionate share of the HIV burden in the United States. Those numbers are not going to do down until we get informed and get proactive. Please help us spread the word. Please have #UnaConversacion with your family.