June 15th is Irish AIDS Day, an occasion when we reflect on the story of HIV in this country. Today many will be remembering loved ones and others will be processing the stigma they experience while living with HIV. It is also likely that there will be a new HIV diagnosis today. Every 18 hours another person in Ireland receives news of a HIV positive test.
So ask yourself, what can I do today?
If you do not know your HIV status, get tested. At www.hivservices.ie you will find a list of local testing centres most of which offer testing for free, all of which offer it confidentialy.
Challenge stigma. HIV related stigma is all around us and often is linked to other forms of stigma particularly as relates to racism, homophobia and class divides. A kind word, a warm embrace, a shared meal can all play a part in ending the marginalisation.
Support ACET and be part of the story of seeking to improve the lives of those living with and affected by HIV and playing our part in reducing the number of new cases of HIV in Ireland.