Shawn + Gwenn

The #UEqualsU Issue of POZ

Kudos to POZ for shining a spotlight on #UEqualsU in the latest issue of the magazine. A lot of folks still need to learn what that means: that an undetectable viral load for someone who is HIV positive means that, while still living with the virus, they are unable to transmit the virus.

Getting the information out there increases HIV testing, reduces stigma and encourages people to stay on their HIV medications and in contact with their doctors. Over the last two years, whenever I’ve had a speaking engagement or have found myself in a private discussion about HIV, I always make a special point to talk about U=U.

It’s also important to make clear that a detectable viral load isn’t a green light to discriminate. HIV criminalization is a huge problem. As much as I love U=U, I also love my detectable brothers and sisters. So regardless of our viral loads, let’s make sure we all stand together and that stigma lost for some isn’t simply stigma transferred to others. 

Positively Yours,

Shawn

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