MS Black Caucus discusses HIV statistics - - The News for South Mississippi

MS Black Caucus discusses HIV statistics

(Photo source: WLOX) (Photo source: WLOX)

Kathy Varner, executive director of the AIDS services coalition in Hattiesburg, presented to the Mississippi Black Caucus of elected officials on Sunday.

During lunch, she facilitated a break out group to work to find strategies to combat the growing issue of HIV/AIDS in the state. 

"The African-American population in Mississippi is where HIV has come to roost. One in two gay males in Jackson, by the year 2020, are anticipated to be HIV-positive. We have to do something to [decrease] that statistic," said Varner. "African-American women are 26 percent times likely than white women to be infected. The disparities in the HIV community are awful, as far as it comes to people of color." 

Varner says Mississippi is number one in the United states for new infection rates between 13 to 24 year olds. She says coming up with a solution will be a comprehensive effort.

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