In a powerful op-ed written for Gay Star News, openly out Australian bobsledder Simon Dunn muses about the importance of allies when it comes to erasing the stigma of HIV.
“If I can encourage those who are like I was in my early 20s to educate themselves,” he writes, “perhaps one day the miseducation associated with HIV will be a distant memory.”
By working to overcome his lack of knowledge on the subject, he no sees that it’s “completely untrue that people living with HIV can’t live full lives. In fact, we now know people diagnosed with HIV on effective treatment can’t pass it on.”
He also emphasizes that HIV isn’t something that only impacts gay men. It’s something “that affects people of all backgrounds across the globe.”
“It’s just that my community has shouldered a huge amount of the burden of the epidemic. This puts us in a powerful position to be the champions and to continue to overcome stigmas associated with HIV/AIDS through impactful education efforts.
That’s why I wear my red ribbon on World AIDS Day.”
The whole piece, which deserves to be read in its entirety, can be viewed here.