The activist group Release Aging People in Prison has launched an urgent campaign to get the governor to enact mass clemency before the coronavirus sweeps through New York’s 52 prisons.
While black and Latinx gay and bisexual men and transgender women make up a larger portion of HIV cases in and around Boston, the opioid crisis has led to spiking HIV rates among injection drug users.
"No longer am I the impulsive person I once was with total disregard for any and all consequences. Now I think everything through, playing all the outcomes in my mind first, so I can make the right decisions."
Being HIV positive and feeling the side effects of various meds has encouraged Tim Hinkhouse to care more about his body: "I have wanted to learn all I can to stay healthy."
"People with AIDS are vilified for something they did once in their lives -- for unsafe sex or injecting drugs," says Laura Whitehorn. It's similar with the population aging in prison, she says, held indefinitely due to parole denials.
"This is spiritual work, and I feel as if I am spiritually guided," explains Shabazz-El of the U.S. Positive Women's Network (PWN). "My story is one where God has purposely placed people in my life."