The international theme of this year’s #WorldAIDSDay is “Global Solidarity, Shared Responsibility”
BY ORLY LYONNE
World AIDS Day originated at the 1988 United Nations World Summit of Ministers of Health on Programmes for AIDS Prevention and is held each year on December 1.
Every year, United Nations agencies, governments, nonprofit organizations, and civil society join together to campaign around specific themes related to AIDS. The day is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV/AIDS, to show support for people living with HIV, and to commemorate people who have passed away due to HIV/AIDS. The international theme of this year’s #WorldAIDSDay is “Global Solidarity, Shared Responsibility.”
“The City’s annual recognition of World AIDS Day is a chance for us each to stop and take note of the extraordinary loss that our community has experienced during nearly four decades, as well as our remarkable resiliency in the face of that loss,” said City of West Hollywood Mayor Lindsey P. Horvath. “So many of our friends, neighbors, and loved ones have been taken due to HIV and AIDS; yet we continue our fight to end their transmission through education, access to medical care, and resources for ALL people. Our reflection and commemoration is an occasion to deepen our resolve to our City’s vision of ending HIV and AIDS.”
The City of West Hollywood is currently seeking feedback about stigma experienced as a result of sexual orientation, gender identity, or HIV status. The City’s Social Services Division has launched a short survey, as part of efforts to implement the City’s HIV Zero Initiative. Community members, regardless of HIV status, are encouraged to provide feedback. A goal of the survey is to understand how stigma impacts access to care and overall health and wellness. The survey is available at: https://www.weho.org/services/social-services/hiv-aids-resources.
The onset of the HIV/AIDS epidemic had a significant impact in West Hollywood. The disease’s elevated infection rate among gay men caused a devastatingly high number of deaths in the City. The City of West Hollywood was one of the first government entities to provide social services grants to local HIV/AIDS organizations. The City of West Hollywood sponsored one of the first AIDS awareness campaigns in the country in October 1985 and the City’s response to the AIDS crisis has been recognized as a model for other cities, nationally and globally.
The City of West Hollywood actively participates in the development of programs that can bring awareness about the HIV/AIDS epidemic and services to people living with HIV/AIDS. In January 2015, the City announced its vision to become an ‘HIV Zero’ city. The City is currently implementing its HIV Zero Initiative.
For more information visit www.weho.org