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FOR RELEASE: Oct.5, 2005
CONTACT: Pamela Williams
Office of Communications

National Latino AIDS Awareness Day, October 15
“Open Your Eyes: HIV Has No Borders”

To mark a special day of awareness and prevention against HIV/AIDS in the Latino community, the Latino Commission on AIDS, the Hispanic Federation, cities across the nation, and the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) will recognize the 3nd Annual National Latino AIDS Awareness Day on Saturday, Oct. 15.

“National Latino AIDS Awareness Day is mobilizing those in the Latino communities to take action by getting tested and educating themselves and their families about this terrible disease,” said Michael Harmon, chief, OSDH HIV/STD Service.

Harmon noted that according to cumulative data for 2002, the latest data available, four percent (98 cases) of HIV cases reported in Oklahoma were diagnosed in the Hispanic population, and four percent (147 cases) of AIDS cases were diagnosed in the Hispanic population. Hispanics make up six percent of Oklahoma’s population.

Adolfo Morales, HIV/AIDS coordinator for the Latino Community Development Agency in Oklahoma City said, “National Latino AIDS Awareness Day is a day to ask that religious, civic and elected officials confront the stigma associated with HIV that keeps this disease such a ‘dirty little secret’ in the broader Latino family.” Morales called for appropriate funding for HIV prevention and for care and housing for all Latinos regardless of immigration status, risk group or nationality.

Activities related to National Latino AIDS Awareness Day include the following:

  • On Friday, Oct. 14, the Latino Community Development Agency at 420 Southwest 10th in Oklahoma City will provide HIV and syphilis testing from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, contact Adolfo Morales at (405) 236-0701.
  • On Saturday, Oct. 22, the Tulsa H.O.P.E Testing Clinic/Clinica de Pruebas H.O.P.E will provide HIV testing at Hicks Community Center, 34th and Mingo in Tulsa. For more information, call (918) 749-8378 / Spanish-Espaņol: (918) 748-8389.

For a complete list of National Latino AIDS Awareness Day activities occurring throughout the U.S., visit www.nlaad.org.



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