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AIDS Action Committee Offers and Supports Variety of Events to Honor National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
Date:2/7/2008

Hosts Lunch Forum at HQ, Offers Expanded Hours for Rapid HIV Testing and 2 Film Screenings by MALE Center and Joins Healing Our Land, Inc. and Mass. Black Legislative Caucus on Disparities Panel at Roxbury Comm. College

BOSTON, Feb. 7 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- To commemorate the nation's eighth recognition of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts, Inc. (AAC) is collaborating to present and participate in several events that reflect the complexity of interests and needs surrounding the critical issue of HIV/AIDS among Black communities in Boston, both current and historical.

A midday lunchtime Historical Overview and Moderated Discussion at AAC's office on Washington Street in Boston features Harold D. Cox, MSSW, Associate Dean of Public Health Practice, Boston University School of Public Health and former Chief Public Health Officer for the City of Cambridge (and previous Director of Client Services at AAC), and Douglas Brooks, MSW, Vice President, Health Services, Justice Resource Institute (JRI), moderated by Larry Day, Manager, Community Relations, AIDS Action Committee. They will lead participants to discuss an historical overview of the local Black community's response to the epidemic and to explore needed steps to move forward in Boston towards ending the epidemic in a community most disproportionately affected here and across the country. The 12-2 lunch is free and reservations are requested due to space limitations (RSVP to policy@aac.org).

The MALE Center's free, rapid 20-minute HIV testing is expanded (12-9 p.m.) for NBHAAD, and the Center will also present two screenings of the network television documentary "Out of Control: AIDS in Black America" from 3-5 p.m. at host Harriett Tubman House, United South End Settlements, 566 Columbus Ave. in Boston's South End and a second screening at 7 p.m. across the street at The MALE Center, 571 Columbus Ave., followed by a discussion on the impact of HIV in Boston's Black community. Everyone is welcome to attend, and refreshments will be served.

Healing our Land, Inc.(HOLI) and The Massachusetts Black Legislative Caucus (MBLC) are calling on members of the community to attend a special forum titled "Prevention is Power" to respond to "An Added Burden: The Impact of the HIV/AIDS Epidemic on Communities of Color in Massachusetts," made public last Dec., 1, World AIDS Day by The Massachusetts Department of Public Health. It will be held from 6-9 p.m. at Roxbury Community College's Student Center and also offers free on-site rapid HIV testing from 5-9 p.m. on Dotwell's mobile clinic.

Hosted by Rep. Gloria L. Fox, MBLC Vice-Chair and moderated by Min. Franklin Wendell Hobbs, the forum will include a panel of elected officials, HIV/AIDS community experts including AIDS Action's Larry Day and JRI Health's Douglas Brooks, MSW, Faith leaders and members of the community at large to discuss a full-scale perspective on HIV/AIDS and its impact on communities of color in Massachusetts, as outlined in the ground-breaking report issued by The Commonwealth on World AIDS Day 2007.

Members of The Massachusetts Black Legislative Caucus were tested for HIV publicly last year at The State House on National HIV Testing Day as part of a call for communities of color to get tested for HIV on or after that day.

Contact: Diego Sanchez, dsanchez@aac.org

617.450.1524, 617.835.1455 or

Paul Twitchell, ptwitchell@aac.org

617.450.1215


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SOURCE AIDS Action Committee
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