Report from the Field: Experience of online outreach for black MSM populations at high risk for HIV transmission
Minority men who have sex with men (MSM) are among the most difficult population to access for HIV risk reduction, and have among the highest incidence rates of HIV in the US. Black men and women accounted for 44% of all new HIV infections in the US in2010, and of these, black MSM accounted for 51% (CDC, 2016).
The BARRE (Bareback Assertive Risk Reduction Education) Project collected data engaging men who have sex with men (MSM) from the Internet in Houston, Texas from November 2013 to June 2015 (36 months). On sexual partner seeking websites, 400 MSM advertising for bareback sex were contacted 1 on 1 online for synchronous or asynchronous chats, and responded. Texting took on average about 15 minutes, and phone conversations a little less than 20 minutes. The interviewer was a black gay man trained in outreach and working in close coordination with the local health department. Men who responded were young (51.8% were aged 18-29, the remainder 30-54); 78% were African American, 18.5% Latino, and the remainder white. Over half (59.5%) identified as HIV negative, 19.5% were unknown, or did not disclose, their HIV status, and 21% identified as HIV positive; and 67% had tested for HIV in the past 12 months. Those with unknown HIV status were twice as likely as those who knew they were HIV positive or believed they were HIV negative, to have had unprotected anal sex at last intercourse.
Hey guys, I’m still in Barcelona until tomorrow, I’ve seen beautiful things so far. I always liked the European architecture and Barcelona has some gorgeous neighbourhoods. My favorite is the Gothic Quarter, the streets are super narrow and packed with small restaurants, cafés, shops, churches and old Gothic buildings, very impressive.
Yesterday I went to the Sagrada Familia, a temple started by Gaudi many years ago, still being constructed following Gaudi’s rules and plans that he left before he died. Definitely impressive. I took the ticket to see the towers and this is very nice as well. You get to see Barcelona from up above, and it’s pretty scary (especially if you’re scared of heights like me). I’m not religious at all, but it felt amazing to be inside one of the most visited churches in the world. Check out below for few pictures of my visit.
Tomorrow is Mykonos, I’ll be relaxing and going to the beach and eat good food. I was not impressed so much by Barcelona’s food and service and I know that Mykonos’ food is exquisite so I can’t wait for it.
I’ll talk to you later guys and if you have any restaurant advice for Mykonos, or things to see etc, let me know.
Comments on A4A suggest our body chemistry is in sync with other guys if positive contacts get off the ground! If not introduced by a friend or colleague from work, some guys start the process by glancing at other males while sitting at their favorite hangout. Hopefully their eyes will “lock onto” those of another male. If eye contact is made, they glance away quickly but then return for a longer look while they size up each other. Body chemistry can set up a strong emotional draw through eye contact. That can lead to an initial impromptu “hello.” Some responses can escalate rapidly into more than “hello” and you exchange greetings with “my name is…..”
When looking for a potential playmate, you may find yourself evaluating his physical assets. After making eye contact, his physique will usually get your attention first and his personality will come in second. You may discover his personality is friendly and warm and revealed in the way he expresses himself. Although you may suppress your initial feelings, desire for physical encounters cannot be ignored. Some guys don’t want to come across as taking inventory of the meat market and thus will meet the first time without any significant physical contact.
NOTE: As a counselor, I sometimes find myself in the midst of the developmental stages of a major disaster on the horizon. The following scenario is real and only the names and places are deleted to protect the innocent from the fallout. Now for the facts:
A young teacher, age 28 in a European capital city, asked for my assistance with his frustrations concerning his sexuality—whether bisexual or gay. I learned that he is fluent in English and has responsibilities with Olympic activities. He is the eldest of two sons in an Eastern Orthodox family that lives in another city in his country where his father is a medical professional. They are unaware of his frustrations with his sexuality and certainly would not condone any idea of his possibly being gay. He states having had sexual relations with females in the past but only a single encounter with a much older man who sucked him off. At this juncture in his life, he wants to explore his gay side and discover whether he is bisexual or gay.
If you were traveling to another planet last night, you might not know that Celine Dion won the most prestigious award of the night at the Billboard Music Awards, The Icon Award, honouring her for her amazing career that now spreads over 3 decades. With over 200 million albums sold worldwide and a permanent show in Vegas for over 10 years, Celine is still one of the most lucrative and popular singers on the planet. Being from Montreal myself, she is definitely my favorite since I’m a kid. Celine started her career at 12 years old in Montreal, and we all watch her grow to this Diva that she is now today.
At the BBMA, Celine also sang “Show Must Go On” from Freddie Mercury, another icon, a dramatic powerful rock ballad in which the singer makes reference to her belated husband. Everything was perfect about her performance. I watched it 5 times in a row. The dress, the voice, the orchestra, the acceptance speech and the emotion. You can see the performance below.
Celine also released today the first single from her upcoming french album “Encore Un Soir” written by Jean-Jacques Goldman, another beautiful and very emotional song that talks about love. You can listen to it below as well.
Good evening guys (From Barcelona…)