Today is National HIV Testing Day, and agencies around the country are raising awareness. The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, estimates that 1.2 million people in the U.S. are living with HIV. 20% of those people don’t know they have the infection.
AIDS Community Resources in Utica partnered with Hope House to offer testing all afternoon. Coordinators say the only way to know if you have HIV is to get tested.
“I think there’s a stigma with any sexually transmitted disease. Anytime we can get right out in the public, we show people this is nothing to be ashamed of. We’re out on the street. We’re trying to see the public, we want them to knows there’s no judgement involved, we just want them to get tested so you can save your life,” says Melissa Swald Camman, AIDS Community Resources.
Coordinators say about 50 people came out to the site on Eagle Street. Testing was free and open to the public.