Leading Houston HIV Advocate to Meet with Democratic Presidential Candidate Bernie Sanders

By Kevin Nix, Sr. Director of Communications

The nation’s top HIV experts and advocates, including attorney Venita Ray, public affairs specialist at Houston-based Legacy Community Health, are meeting with Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders in San Bernardino, CA tomorrow to discuss his plans for an AIDS-free America. In March, 70 HIV/AIDS advocates, including New York-based Housing Works, sent letters to all 2016 presidential candidates urging each of them to make ending the HIV/AIDS epidemics in the U.S. and around the world a priority.

“I am honored to be asked by Housing Works to sit down with the Senator to discuss ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic,” said Ray. “As a woman living with HIV, I know full well we have a lot of work still to do on the policy front nationally – and in my home state of Texas. In Houston, African-American women were newly diagnosed with HIV at a rate 21 times that of whites and almost six times that of Hispanic women. We all have to do a better job of getting the word out about treatment options, including the daily pill – called PrEP – that helps prevent HIV.”

Last month, HIV advocates met with Hillary Clinton at her Brooklyn campaign headquarters.

Legacy Community Health received a $50,000 grant from the Ford Foundation and AIDS United earlier this year to develop a strategic plan to end HIV in Houston. The project, “Ending New Diagnoses (END) HIV/AIDS Houston,” brings together community leaders to figure out how to cut new diagnoses in half over five years.

Photo credit: Phil Roeder https://www.flickr.com/photos/tabor-roeder/21581179719