Tomorrow, the Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention at the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) will release i know, a new social media effort of CDC’s Act Against AIDS campaign, to combat HIV among African American young adults. i know is designed to encourage young African American men and women aged 18–24 to talk openly and often about HIV/AIDS with their peers, partners, and families, online and off. i know will disseminate HIV prevention information through several social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and text messages aimed at fostering conversations about HIV/AIDS among young African Americans.
Although African Americans make up just 12% of the U.S. population, they represented nearly half of all new domestic HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths in recent years. Young African Americans particularly are among the populations hardest hit. While African Americans represent only 14% of people ages 13 to 29 years in the United States, they account for half of the new HIV infections in that age group. And young black gay and bisexual men are especially affected, representing more than half (55%) of new infections among younger African Americans.
CDC will release i know in collaboration with the Atlanta University Center at an event on the Clark Atlanta University campus in Atlanta at 4:00 p.m. EST tomorrow, March 4. The event will be video-streamed online and will feature renowned celebrity social and political commentator host Jeff Johnson (BET, Tom Joyner Morning Show), the premier of a video public service announcement (PSA) starring actor and singer Jamie Foxx, and a performance by hip-hop recording artist Jerimah. Author and AIDS advocate Marvelyn Brown will discuss her personal story about living with HIV, and CDC experts will be on hand to answer questions from the audience.
Also beginning tomorrow, celebrity partners like Jamie Foxx, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Keri Hilson, and Raheem DeVaughn will begin promoting i know on their Facebook pages and in their Twitter feeds to increase participation and expand the conversation’s reach. In addition, all of these celebrities will lend their star power to Web videos and radio spots highlighting the importance of talking about HIV.
Last year, CDC partnered with the White House and the Department of Health and Human Services to launch Act Against AIDS, a national domestic HIV/AIDS awareness campaign intended to address the complacency around HIV/AIDS in the United States. As one phase of the Act Against AIDS campaign, i know is part of CDC’s commitment to addressing the silence around and empowering young African Americans to start a dialogue about HIV/AIDS.
You are invited to view the i know launch event, Jamie Foxx PSA, and other celebrity testimonies.
- View the live simulcast of the release March 4 at 4:00 p.m. EST, via the i know Web site at www.actagainstaids.org. (Highlights from the simulcast also will be posted to the Web site in the days following the event.)
- Visit the i know Facebook page.
- Follow i know on Twitter, www.twitter.com/iknow_talkhiv.