‘Moral turning point for our nation,’ says AHF President Michael Weinstein
In response to the national moral crisis exposed by the tragedy of Charlottesville, AHF, the largest global AIDS group, is launching a new national advocacy and billboard campaign #StandAgainstHate targeting the hatred, racism and white supremacy so brutally unmasked in Charlottesville and its aftermath
LOS ANGELES (August 17, 2017) In response to the tragedy in Charlottesville and its turbulent, eye-opening aftermath—a tragedy which exposed a national moral crisis rending the country the scale of which has not been seen for more than half-century—AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) is launching a new national advocacy campaign to take on the hatred, racism and burgeoning white supremacy movement so brutally unmasked by Charlottesville and its aftermath.
The advocacy campaign, titled, #StandAgainstHate, features a national billboard campaign rolling out in multiple AHF regions over the next few weeks—including ten #StandAgainstHate billboards that will be posted in Los Angeles on or by Saturday, August 19th—a social media launch on media platforms of AHF and many of its affiliate organizations as well as the hosting of community forums, including listening and talkback sessions in select cities around the country where AHF has a presence.
“AHF has always been willing to protest and stand up against injustice, and we joined with the majority of Americans in condemning the acts of violence, murder and domestic terrorism in Charlottesville,” said Michael Weinstein, President of AIDS Healthcare Foundation. “However, the ongoing aftermath of Charlottesville has exposed a festering underbelly of racism, white supremacy and hatred still present, and growing—and now, sadly, far more exposed and open in the sunlight than ever before. These events have led us to moral turning point for our nation and we must all stand up against such hate.”
The primary target of the hate groups in Virginia—racial and ethnic minorities—are also among key populations that AHF cares for and serves in 14 states and the District of Columbia across the country and 38 other countries around the globe.
“I am absolutely devastated at what the turn of events around Charlottesville has exposed about our country and today feel like we have not moved forward as a nation on race, tolerance and justice over the last fifty years of my life,” said Cynthia Carey-Grant, Executive Director of Women Organized to Respond to Life-threatening Diseases (WORLD), an affiliate of AHF operating in the Bay Area of California. “The events—and response—to Charlottesville over the past week made me think of the profound ‘First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out…’ quote from lectures given by Martin Niemöller, a prominent Protestant pastor who was an outspoken public foe of Adolf Hitler and spent the last seven years of Nazi rule in concentration camps. After Socialists, Trade Unionists and Jews, his poignant remarks concluded, ‘Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.’ Well we will NOT be silenced and let that happen here today! Together we #StandAgainstHate.”
“In addition, as a provider of care and services for those living with HIV and AIDS, stigma and hate are bad for people’s physical, mental and emotional health and wellbeing,” added AHF’s Weinstein. “And as one cannot really separate such social determinants from the environment, we must #StandAgainstHate and against this newly brazen racism and white supremacy infecting our nation.”
First #StandAgainstHate Community Forum set for Los Angeles Sunday, August 20th
#StandAgainstHate L.A. event details:
- Event Title: #StandAgainstHate – Open Forum
- Address: 6500 W. Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles CA 90028
- Theater room, kitchen area for overflow
- Time: Sunday, August 20th, 2pm to 6pm
- Vice Documentary screening: “Charlottesville: Race and Terror”
In addition, the first ten #StandAgainstHate billboards will be posted in Los Angeles on or by Saturday, August 19th. Below are the locations:
- Vine & Santa Monica
- Highland & Hollywood
- Cahuenga & Sunset
- Santa Monica & Holloway
- Sunset & Van Ness
- Sunset& La Brea
- Melrose & La Brea
- Highland & Santa Monica
- Daly & Main
- Hyperion & Rowena
AHF will continue to finish L.A. billboard placements as well as billboard placements in other markets over the next few weeks.