This post is made possible by support from the We Can Stop HIV One Conversation at a Time Campaign.
When Norrin was first diagnosed with autism, my mother said, “You don’t need to tell anyone about Norrin’s autism. It’s nobody’s business.”
What does autism have to do with HIV? Absolutely nothing except my mother’s initial attitude.
Latinos, as much as we love to sit around and bochinchero, we are very private, people. We tell ourselves, that when it comes to mental health, disability, sexuality, abuse, illness – “it’s nobody’s business” and we keep it to ourselves.
Just because we don’t talk about something, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. We need to talk about HIV because it affects the Latino community so much more than we think.
I know it’s not easy to open up on such personal issues. That’s why I admire the One Conversation at a Time campaign. And by collaborating with AltaMed Healthcare services to promote Sin Vergüenza, they are creating a much-needed dialogue about HIV within the Latino community.
Sin Vergüenza is a 4-part telenovela web series about a Mexican-American family coping with HIV and sexuality. Each family member represents a different age group, sexual orientation, and marital status and faces unique challenges. What I appreciate the most is that it doesn’t stereotype, every character is at risk of contracting HIV.
5 Facts about HIV & Latinos
- Hispanics/Latinos in the United States are disproportionately affected by HIV and AIDS; although they represent 16% of the total U.S. population,
- Hispanics/Latinos account for 19% of the 1.1 million people living with HIV in the United States and 21% of new HIV infections each year.
- Hispanic/Latino men account for 87% of all new HIV infections among Hispanics/Latinos in the United States. Most new HIV infections among Hispanic/Latino men (79%) occur among gay and bisexual men.
- Hispanic/Latino youth (ages 13-29) accounted for roughly 20% of new HIV infections among youth in 2010.
- Among Hispanic/Latina women, the rate of HIV infection is 4 times as high as that of white females.
For more facts on HIV and the Latino community: http://www.cdc.gov/nchhstp/newsroom/docs/CDC-HIV-Latinos-508.pdf
And be a part of the online conversation: