Just weeks after the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center unveiled its controversial “HIV is a Gay Disease” campaign, San Francisco’s Department of Health’s raising eyebrows with its “serosorting” advertising initiative.
In an article for the Bay Area Reporter, Zak Szymanski (on whom, we must admit, we have a total gender-bending crush), writes that serosorting’s “a longtime gay community practice where men have a variety of sex, some of it unprotected, with men of the same HIV status.” In an effort to encourage more gays to disclose their HIV status, the Department of Health’s posting adverts featuring the psychedelic photography of Duane Cramer (pictured).
The colorful advertisements are a piece of a much larger DPH project known as the Disclosure Initiative, which involves prevention and care professionals and community members and aims to help men normalize HIV conversations and disclose their status.
Disclosure Initiative director, Doug Sebesta says:
Our campaign was really initiated to help people make better informed decisions. It’s really empowering, and sex positive, and really about arming ourselves with more knowledge.
Because, in the famed words of GI Joe, “Knowing’s half the battle”, especially when talking about HIV/AIDS.