Originally published on Advocate.com February 06 2004 1:00 AM ET
An HIV-positive man in San Francisco who experienced housing discrimination over his serostatus has helped launch the AIDS Housing Alliance, an organization to connect people who have HIV with friendly landlords and prospective roommates, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. "There are landlords willing to take in HIV-positive patients, willing to take Section 8 [housing vouchers]. The problem is finding them," John Crapo, an adviser to the housing alliance, told the Chronicle. "It's the next generation of evolving services needed for people living with HIV. Initially, organizations were set up for the crisis and the dying times. Now, the issues are longevity: How do we live?"
Brian Basinger, who helped launch the housing alliance, said that the need for housing for HIV-positive people is rising, as those already living in AIDS housing projects are living longer lives due to the effectiveness of antiretroviral medications. Falling rents in San Francisco, largely due to the high-tech bust of the late 1990s and early 2000s, still have not made most apartments affordable for low-income HIV-positive renters, Basinger added.
The housing alliance initially will be staffed by volunteers and will link landlords, tenants, and roommates through listings available at the organization's office at 427 S. Van Ness Ave. The group also plans to hold "speed-dating for roommates" sessions once a month, Basinger noted. For more information about the housing alliance, call (415) 703-8634.