Monday, June 22, 2009

The Best Use of Bribery - Hip-Hop for HIV tests

This week in Houston, TX, the NAACP, along with Planned Parenthood and other foundations, are going to bribe young Houstonians into getting HIV and syphilis tests, as well as sexual health education.
And I am loving it!
Sure, I wish we didn't have to resort to bribery to get things done, but hey, I'm just ecstatic they are doing SOMETHING proactive, and probably very helpful!
Anyone 15 to 40 with photo identification (driver’s license or a state, military or school ID)
• What: Free HIV and syphilis rapid tests plus sessions on sexually transmitted disease prevention
• When: 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Thursday
• Where: NAACP Family Technology Center, 4203 Fannin
Information: 713-794-9020
The goal — targeted to National HIV Testing Day on Saturday — is to screen 1,200 people daily from today through Thursday at the NAACP Family Technology Center and another 10,000 in the next two weeks at Planned Parenthood, St. Hope Foundation and other partner agencies.
Everyone who goes in to take these tests, as well as an hour of education, will receive tickets to a concert in the George R Brown Center, with a long list of performers. The entertainers include someone named Bun B (from Port Arthur) and LeToya Luckett, who apparently used to be in Destiny's Child... for that week that they had four members. Whatever, it is still a free concert!
I am so proud to be a Houstonian, because they are taking action against an epidemic of ignorance. There is simply too much information for people to know everything they need to for their own health, especially with declining (and sometimes non-existent) sex education. This seems to be a larger problem with the black youth of America, which is the most bitter irony, because they are much more likely, biologically, to adopt these diseases:
"African-Americans bear the heaviest burden of the nation’s HIV/AIDS crisis. The U.S. population is roughly 12 percent black, but African-Americans account for 46 percent of the 1 million people living with HIV nationwide, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports.
"Those hit hardest in Houston are young and black, which is why the mass testing targets African-American youths."
People do not realize the staggering statistics that go along with these diseases, especially in areas with limited education:
"In 2008, 14 clinic patients tested HIV-positive. There have been three more this year. The youngest was 15; the oldest was 24. Before, an average year turned up five young adults with the virus."
Please, spread the word of this effort, so that we can protect our youth. Hopefully, this will seriously open the eyes and minds of many, urging them to better protect themselves and those they love.
You can read more about this event at The Chron.

No comments: