Print this page    •   Back to Web version of article

U.S. News
San Franciscans Honor Those Touched by AIDS

June 2, 2006

On Thursday, about 200 people gathered at a San Francisco performing arts center to hear elected officials, AIDS activists, and long-term survivors reflect on the 25 years that have passed since CDC first published a report about the disease that would become known as AIDS.

The CDC report centered on a mysterious illness that had been diagnosed in five gay men in Los Angeles. However, the worst years of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the United States would become closely associated with San Francisco. As of last month, the city reported 17,988 cumulative AIDS deaths, or 22 percent of California's total.

"We took the biggest bite of this wormy apple that is AIDS, but we were generous with what we learned," said Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who came to Congress in 1987. Pelosi recalled the stigma that attached itself to AIDS in the early years and cautioned that elected officials must not become complacent in funding HIV research and prevention. "I never thought we would be sitting and standing here 25 years later still without a cure," she said.

Overall, the tone of event was mostly celebratory. The Rev. Yvette A. Flunder of City of Refuge United Church of Christ reminded the audience of the model treatment and prevention programs the city has provided. "This is a praise party. This is a thank you celebration and a thank God celebration," she said.

Flunder invited anyone who felt comfortable identifying themselves as HIV-positive to join her on stage. More than 40 people accepted, clasping hands while the audience gave them a standing ovation and joined in singing "We Shall Overcome."

Back to other news for June 2, 2006

Excerpted from:
Associated Press
06.01.2006; Lisa Leff




This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. You can find this article online by typing this address into your Web browser:
http://www.thebody.com/content/art23580.html

General Disclaimer: TheBody.com is designed for educational purposes only and is not engaged in rendering medical advice or professional services. The information provided through TheBody.com should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. It is not a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, consult your health care provider.