Today is the official “Rock the Red Pump® Campaign” Day, a day when bloggers around the country wear red pumps and blog about women and HIV/AIDS to raise awareness of this crisis.
Launched by the Office of Women’s Health, NWGHAAD is a nationwide observance that encourages people to take action in the fight against HIV/AIDS and raise awareness of its impact on women and girls. Today marks the 5th Annual observance.
We’ve been sporting the “Rock the Red Pump” badge on our blog since late January, and we fully support this effort.
I took a look at the current statistics in my home state of Louisiana, and started with our capital city of Baton Rouge.
I was utterly dismayed to discover these startling facts:
1. Baton Rouge ranks 4th for AIDS case rates among the largest metropolitan areas in the U.S.
2. Baton Rouge Ranks 1st in the state of Louisiana with the Highest Rate of AIDS Cases.
3. Nationally, Louisiana ranks 5th highest in AIDS case rates and 12th in the number of AIDS cases diagnosed.
4. Over 75% of all HIV/AIDS cases in Region Two are African Americans.
5. In Louisiana, 31% of new HIV cases and 31% of new AIDS cases are among women.
6. The number one mode of transmission for females is Heterosexual Activities.
7. HIV continues to disproportionately affect African Americans in Louisiana. In 2007, 72% of newly diagnosed HIV cases and 75% of newly diagnosed AIDS cases were among African Americans.
SOURCE: Baton Rouge Aids Society
Unfortunately, when we view this problem among African Americans from a national perspective, the statistics provided by the Baton Rouge Aids Society get even worse:
African Americans Make Up . . . . .
12% of the U.S. cases of HIV/AIDS
45% of all U.S. AIDS Cases
50% of all U.S. Men Who Have Sex With Men AIDS Cases
56% of all U.S. Female AIDS Cases
58% of all U.S. Pediatric AIDS Cases
Clearly, we have a problem – and it appears to be getting worse.
Get smart. Get tested. Don’t have sex without a condom. Your life may very well depend on it.
Join in the Fray: When was the last time you were tested for HIV/AIDS? If you’re sexually active, do you DARE to engage in sex without demanding that your partner use a condom?
Copyright © 2013 Michelle Matthews Calloway, ASwirlGirl™, The Swirl World™, All rights reserved.