Scroll To Top

Black gay men
form national HIV and health coalition

Black gay men
form national HIV and health coalition

Coalition formed in part due to report showing 46% of urban gay black men are HIV-positive.

Following several months of strategic planning, a group of professional African-American gay men announced Wednesday the formation of the nation's first health policy coalition to address the rising incidence of HIV infections occurring among black gay men. Known as the National Black Gay Men's Advocacy Coalition, the organization will address HIV and other health disparities affecting African-American men who have sex with men.

"The coalition is committed to improving the health and well-being of black gay men through advocacy that is focused on research, policy, education, and training," says newly elected coalition chairman Rudy Carn in a press statement. "It's our time to take control of our lives. If not us, who will?"

The catalyst for the formation of the coalition was a report released in June 2005 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that showed 46% of gay and bisexual black men in five urban centers are HIV-positive.

A. Cornelius Baker, a longtime leader and advocate in the fight against HIV and the former director of Washington, D.C.'s Whitman-Walker Clinic, says that alarmingly high figure highlighted the desperate need to address the spread of HIV among black gay men and the contributing factors fueling its spread. "We cannot stand by and watch as HIV, syphilis, crystal methamphetamine, and other dangers take hold in the lives of black gay men," he said in a statement. "The coalition must do everything to shift the priorities of our nation's public health officials and community leaders to act because the lives of black gay men matter. Silence is not an option."

The coalition's membership is composed of care providers and service agencies with expertise in public policy, government affairs, health care administration, prevention, care and treatment, research, community mobilization, and an array of other disciplines. Founding members represent major cities and rural communities where HIV has most disproportionately affected African-Americans. The coalition also will collaborate with key government agencies and advocacy bodies.

For more information about the coalition, send e-mail to The organization also plans to launch a Web site. (The Advocate)

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories

Outtraveler Staff