Advocates raise awareness on National Latinx AIDS Awareness Day

From the Human Rights Campaign

To Omar Martinez, National Latinx AIDS Awareness Day is about uplifting the voices of Latinx activists and ensuring that Latinx  people living with HIV and AIDS receive the best care possible moving forward while remembering Latinx people who died of HIV and AIDS.

“The way to move forward is to really tackle and address the structural issues,” Martinez, an assistant professor at Temple University’s School of Social Work, told HRC. “[This] includes discrimination, the anti-immigration rhetoric, structural racism, cultural imperalism and access and barriers to health care… I would argue that these are the major challenges.”

October 15 marks National Latinx AIDS Awareness Day — a day to raise awareness about how HIV and AIDS impact the Latinx community, educate the public on preventative measures and more. NLAAD’s theme this year is “living with HIV or not… we’re fighting this together,” focusing on ending the stigma around the disease and helping to address HIV in the Latinx community.

This is immensely important because HIV stigma remains one of the biggest challenges for advocates who are fighting to end it.

As Martinez notes, there’s an intersectional societal stigma that impacts Latinx people living with HIV. Racism, discrimination, criminalization of HIV transmission in several states and the lack of access to care — especially for undocumented people — are all issues Latinx activists are working to address.

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