Thursday , September 16 2021

Awareness of red scarf on HIV and AIDS awareness



In recognition of the national awareness of HIV and AIDS, eight hundred red dolls will be linked to posts and poles that travel through Simcoe County.

The executive director of Gilbert Center, Gerry Croteau, says stigma and negativity on HIV, and the red tie is a disease that continues to be a chronic illness.

"43% of HIV infections are still in gay men or in the LGBTQ community," Croteaud said. "It's important to know how to maintain this message and know that people need to know how to use a safer sex."

Approximately 150 clients, Gilbert Center Barrie works for people with positive HIV, who are also members of the trans community to provide support for men at the service of society.

A client is Randy Davis diagnosed with HIV in February 2015. Davis says he can take medication every day as he wants to live his life.

"I take a pill, it's called a" anti-retro viral therapy. I keep one pill a day and healthy, "Davis said. "I take more vitamins every day than" I do anti-viral drugs ".

This pill eliminates Davis's HIV virus, which is not sexually transmitted. He says that the disease can be confusing, that's why he accepts projects like red cloth.

"Campaigns are very important to raise awareness (and) to educate people," Davis said. "Due to fear and ignorance about HIV, people stigmatize the test."

A great message with this campaign is that people try and reduce risks. Choteau emphasizes that as a chronic illness, HIV is more aware that people are healthier and healthier.

"Knowing your situation, testing is not a risk," said Croteau. "You do not know that HIV can be positive for more than ten years if you are HIV positive."

According to Croteau, in the past, anyone diagnosed by HIV would take more than one tablet every day. Today's pill gives the illness a better life expectancy.

"Side effects are less toxic in the body," said Croteau. "People are more aware, therefore, they will continue to be healthier, better used, they have better diets and are positive for their survival, and they are no longer sentenced to death."

Red scarves fall into the inner communities of Simcoe County, including Midland, Orillia and Bracebridge.

World AIDS Day is December 1.


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