Some of you might remember the controversy over a 2 year old HIV positive infant named Caleb Glover who was thrown out of an RV park along with his family in Silver Hill, Alabama when his mother disclosed his HIV status to park manager Ken Zadnichek. Zadnichek stated he wasn't sure if Caleb could infect other park visitors if he "upchucked" on them and it was his job to ensure the safety of all patrons and not just Caleb. Once word of this incident spread, major news networks ran the story bringing national attention to the unfair treatment Caleb experienced and the social stigma that still exists in this country for people living with HIV/AIDS.
On September 3rd, The Campaign to End Aids and over 150 people living with HIV/AIDS and their supporters will caravan from all over the country to participate in a peaceful protest by having a family reunion at the RV park. Participants plan to barbecue and enjoy the pool and showers while wearing bathing suits that say HIV Positive in the same showers that Caleb was forbidden to use previously because of his status.
As a native of Alabama I'm extremely embarrassed by the ignorance that still exists in the state and around the country on this issue, and although I don't look forward to crossing the Georgia line into Alabama, I think this event is well worth the trip.
Sylvia Thorne and my friend Larry Bryant of Housing Works in D.C. are organizers of this event. For additional info contact David Thorpe at Thorpe@housingworks.org or 646-210-1805.