- Bayard Rustin (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)
Last month, the Centers for Disease Control released new figures charting the HIV epidemic among black, gay men in D.C. The figures are grim: One in three black men who have sex with men in the District is HIV-positive, and infections among young black men are higher than any other group.
Beginning next month, local advocacy organizations including the National Organization of People With AIDS and the DC Center will spearhead a campaign addressing HIV's spread in that demographic. "The recent data just reinforces the importance of this kind of work," DC Center executive director David Mariner told me.
The Bayard Rustin Project, named for the civil rights organizer, "is designed to increase access to and use of HIV testing and prevention services among African American men who have sex with men," the DC Center says. Stay tuned for town halls, testing events, and an advocacy training program for HIV-positive black gay men in the coming months.