Jacksonville kicks off World AIDS Day events with quilt ceremony

1 in 7 people living with HIV don't know they have it, health officials say

By Garrett Pelican - Digital executive producer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Though World AIDS Day isn’t until Saturday, there will be events throughout Jacksonville raising awareness about the illness all week long.

Leading off the schedule of events was a ceremony held on Monday at noon to showcase an AIDS memorial quilt on display at City Hall now through Dec. 3.

The goal of the quilt display and other events is to show support for people living with HIV and to honor those who have died from an AIDS-related illness.

Of the more than 1.1 million people in the U.S. living with HIV, one in seven don’t know it, according to the Florida Department of Health in Duval County.

The health department is pushing for routine screening for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, more testing among high-risk populations, prevention strategies and overall awareness.

Other events scheduled this week include:

  • Nov. 28: World AIDS Day College Outreach at the University of North Florida and Florida State College at Jacksonville from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Nov. 29: World AIDS Day College Outreach at Jacksonville University from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Nov. 30: Ultimate Runway Fashion show will be held at 700 East Union Street Unit J-1 beginning at 7 p.m. Tickets range from $35 to $75.
  • Dec. 1: A Memorial Walk and a service will be held at West Union Missionary Baptist Church on Saturday at 6 p.m.

To learn more about HIV counseling, or to find a location where you can get tested, please visit KnowYourHIVStatus.com.

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