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Yesterday marked the 12th year of the Naitonal Black HIV/AIDS Day. Unfortunately, the statistics of the HIV/AIDS epidemic is still and even more so affecting our community. “HIV is now the 3rd leading cause of death for black women in there 30s and 40s”(see footnote).  As adults we really influence the life of the next generation because the current statistics and predictions for our young people are even worse. According to recent stats, “…our young people-men and women – many of whom will become infected before their 30th birthday (40% of new infections among blacks are young people aged 13-29).” Below is a chart that gives a snapshot of the Black HIV/AIDS Epidemic we are currently facing.

In order for us to End AIDS by 2015 there is a lot of work to accomplish. That is why I’m taking this week to spread the word and encourage testing in our communities. The government has even recently taken action to assist many organizations who have been fighting this disease for years. This year July 2012 will become the National HIV Awareness month the Coalition for Naitonal HIV Awareness Day will be hosting a conference in Washington, DC dates are TBA.  Click on link for more info http://www.nationalhivawarenessmonth.org/

The common goal to end AIDS/HIV overlooks sexual gender, nationality, or religion we as Americans must wake up in order to save the future of our country. Being informed and abstaining from sexual intercourse is the best way to truly protect you from HIV/AIDS. There are individuals who believe abstinence is dead. However, if you as a young person want to remain alive literally abstinence is the way to go 🙂

Being a faith community leader I believe it is essential that the black church specifically leads the way in changing this epidemic. How many more friends and family members have to die before we realize how serious this is? HIV/AIDS awareness is more than one day or month but must constantly be in our minds as much as sex. Because that’s what we must think about every time we make a decision to have sexual intercourse outside of marriage.

Footnote: All statistical information is from National Urban League unless noted otherwise. Also read Article by Urban League on Black AIDS/HIV Epidemic