What is Southern HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
There is an HIV/AIDS crisis in the South. This reality requires all of us to be engaged in collective, bold, and innovative strategies to reduce these disparities.
Southern HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (SHAAD) is the day we rewrite our narrative! SHAAD gives us all an opportunity to join a national movement to raise awareness, erase HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination, and to advocate for new and necessary resources and solutions to stem the tide of HIV/AIDS in the South.
Be the southern solution today and sign up to be a supporter of SHAAD! We are the difference we need in the South. Not in the South? That’s not a problem. You, too, are a part of the solution.
End Injustice to End the HIV Epidemic
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We evoke Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s words in a call to end the HIV epidemic in the South. The only way to do that is to look at patterns that weave together and keep us from full and effective solutions. The HIV epidemic is more than HIV; it’s housing justice, healthcare justice, and socioeconomic justice. We must stitch together the individual effects with the community harm to end the cycle of statically ending the epidemic.
When we’re without food and shelter, we can never prioritize our health—physical or mental. A community that is held down by the needs of the individual will be stuck in a state of hopelessness. Our focus can’t be to end the epidemic because health is not the priority, housing is.
Living a healthy life impacted by HIV starts with the healthcare we have access to. Stigmatizing language or imagery keeps people away from HIV prevention resources. If companies continue to project what “they” need, we’ll never end the HIV epidemic. The gap in access acts as missing data in the necessary funding for most communities. This tension will always keep the most impacted from receiving the resources needed to end the HIV epidemic.
Individuals fighting for a living wage are surviving in resource deserts. If we don’t provide the tools for these communities to fight back, the HIV epidemic will not end. Housing, Healthcare, and socioeconomic justice all lead to individuals and communities affirming their needs and not allowing people to come in and tell them what they need. This is how the cycle starts when we are not united, when we do not look at providing the tools, we cannot end the HIV epidemic.
erase the stigma and discrimination
Want to commemorate Southern HIV/AIDS Awareness Day in your community? Download this resource guide to get started.