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CDC campaign ‘Testing Makes Us Stronger’ targets black gay, bisexual men

HIV posterWith new numbers from the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control & Prevention showing a 48 percent increase in new HIV infections for young black gay and bisexual men between 2006-2009, activists and CDC officials are trying to find ways to halt the pandemic particularly within this community.

Today it was announced at the 2011 HIV Prevention Conference that the CDC is set to launch a "Testing Makes Us Stronger" campaign with black MSMs (men who have sex with men).

Featured in posters and in social media campaigns including Facebook and Twitter, the project will urge black gay and bisexual men to get tested and know their status. The campaign will also be advertised in black gay publications as well as mainstream black publications.

The conference is being held in Atlanta through Wednesday, Aug. 17.

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New HIV infections up 48 percent in black gay, bi young men

Young, black gay and bisexual men experienced a 48 percent increase in new HIV infections from 2006 through 2009, according to new data released today by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention.

The Atlanta-based CDC determined figures that show that in 2006, there were 4,400 HIV infections among black gay and bisexual men ages 13-29. The numbers jumped to 6,500 infections in 2009 within the same age group. This subpopulation represents the only subpopulation in the U.S. to experience a statistically significant increase during these three years.

“We are deeply concerned by the alarming rise in new HIV infections in young, black gay and bisexual men and the continued impact of HIV among young gay and bisexual men of all races,” said Jonathan Mermin, director of CDC’s Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, in a statement.

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Would you watch reality TV about Atlanta activists?

Re: “Taking a peek into black gay Atlanta” (March 9)

"Instead of a reality TV show spotlighting gay people in Atlanta obsessed with their egos, their nightclubs, their bling, their Mercedes and their own self-adulating, lip-glossed fabulousness, how about a reality TV show about gay people in Atlanta who are working for nondiscrimination, who are working for marriage equality, who are serving in the military, who are serving the HIV/AIDS population, who are gentrifying and renovating the run-down neighborhoods, and oh, can’t forget, who are running the gay media? I’d be a lot more interested in that show."