Inspiring Voices in the LGBTQ Movement

Just as they have with COVID-19, communities of color have been disproportionately affected by HIV/AIDS. The reasons are not mysterious: The same systemic racism that devalues Black lives permeates institutions – healthcare, housing, work, family – that we need to take care of ourselves and one another. The coupling of racism and AIDS stigma has been lethal.

At the same time, drawing on civil rights traditions and strategies – and on often-ignored community assets and resilience -- AfricanAmericans have also been at the forefront of AIDS activism. 

The National AIDS Memorial has long been committed to giving voice to the stories of Black lives, stories that operate at the intersections of race, class, gender, sexuality, and ability, stories that illustrate that the fight against HIV/AIDS is inseparable from the fight against racism, stories premised on the fact that Black Lives Matter. 

The National AIDS Memorial says Black Lives Matter. We are against racism. We are against police brutality. We are against the killing of our black and brown brothers and sisters in the streets. We are against a system of oppression that has disproportionately kept black and brown people severely disadvantaged for centuries. This must end. The story of the AIDS epidemic is the story of black and brown people. We seek to listen. We seek to learn. We seek meaningful change that empowers and supports valuable black and brown life because Black Lives Matter.

Strong voices in our community include:

Sylvester
Antwan Matthews
Reggie Williams
• Mary Bowman
• Gina Brown
• Tori Cooper
• Tranisha Arzah
• Renae Taylor
Achim Howard
• A.J.Scruggs
• Dr. Dazon Dixon Diallo
• Kiara St.James
Waheedah Shabazz
• Pat Kelly
• Graylin Thornton
• Queen Cougar

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Our work helps ensure that the lives of people who died from AIDS are not forgotten and the story of AIDS is known by future generations - so that never again will a community be harmed because of fear, silence, discrimination, or stigma.

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Our work helps ensure that the lives of people who died from AIDS are not forgotten and the story of AIDS is known by future generations -
so that never again will a community be harmed because of fear, silence, discrimination, or stigma.
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