World AIDS Day events in the Northwest

Today is the 22nd Annual World AIDS Day, a time for communities to come together to ensure we not only that we recognize the 25 million individuals lost to HIV and AIDS, but the 33 million global citizens living with the HIV virus today.

In the US, there are over 1.1 Million Americans living with HIV and more than 20% of those infected do not even know they carry the virus. It is estimated by the CDC that 56,000 new infections are occurring annually, that’s one new infection every nine and a half minutes in the US due to a disease that is completely preventable.

Oregon has lots of events to commemorate this day including religious services, education and vigils and remembrances. Eugene has a Memorial Reception at 6 tonight where Divisi will perform with speakers following. Portland has at least 2 walking vigils, one a glowstick carrying march gathering at 4:45 at City Hall with an address from Mayor Sam Adams at 5:20 and another with the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence at 7 featuring the Veil of Shame and the Veil of Remembrance starting at Vault (226 NW 12th).

On the Veil of Shame we will invite people to write all the words and names that have been used against them in their life to shame or hurt them. The Sisters will carry that burden away and then release it in a ritual burning of the Veil at CC Slaughter’s.

The site also showcases a few featured stories. There’s also a handy guide from Time on ways to commemorate without leaving your desk, and the World AIDS Campaign has a lot of helpful materials including posters to download, world events, case studies and more.

For more specifics on NW events you can call the World AIDS Day NW Information Line: 503-278-3815.

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