OIDP Observes Pride Month
As part of our observance of LGBTQI+ Pride Month, colleagues at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Infectious Disease and HIV/AIDS Policy (OIDP) created this short Pride video message during a recent staff meeting.
Staff discussed what Pride means to them and the importance of celebrating our own LGBTQI+ and allied staff, other colleagues, and the larger community, and recommitted themselves to achieving health equity for all, including LGBTQI+ people.
B. Kaye Hayes, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Infectious Disease, Director of OIDP, and Executive Director of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS shared this about the video message from OIDP: “I am so proud of our OIDP staff’s Pride video that recognizes and celebrates our colleagues and friends and reminds us that stigma is often a critical barrier to people accessing safe and effective care, which impacts the issues we address in our office, including the syndemics of HIV, STIs, viral hepatitis, and other infectious diseases.”
Celebrations of LGBTQI+ Pride during June—and beyond—contribute to efforts to end the HIV epidemic. As highlighted in the National HIV/AIDS Strategy, HIV-related stigma and discrimination are real and harmful. Stigma and discrimination can deter people from learning their status, accessing prevention services, or seeking or remaining in care. As the Strategy notes, this includes not just stigma and discrimination related to HIV status, but the intersecting stigmas experienced by people with or at risk for HIV, including homophobia and transphobia. The Strategy sets forth an objective focused on reducing HIV-related stigma and discrimination and details five strategies for federal and nonfederal stakeholders to pursue to do so.
Under the Ending the HIV Epidemic in the U.S. initiative, similar such efforts to combat HIV-related stigma and discrimination are part of the work underway in 57 jurisdictions across the country, with investments and support from HHS agencies.
HIV.gov continues to support these efforts to reduce HIV-related stigma and discrimination as part of our ongoing work to achieve optimal health outcomes for people with or experiencing risk for HIV throughout the nation.