Uplift: Uplifting LGBTQ+ Experience Within and Beyond Unitarian Universalism

UPLIFT: December 1st is World AIDS Day

A red ribbon in front of a blue globe overlayed with "World AIDS Day December 1."

World AIDS Day - December 1

A red ribbon in front of a blue globe overlayed with "World AIDS Day December 1." 

By Michael J. Crumpler

On World Aids Day: We Remember, We Reflect, and We Continue the Fight!

Another year has come, and HIV and AIDS are still a reality in the world in which we live and move.

For some, it’s a passing thought … perhaps when a prescription needs to be refilled … or safer sex needs to be practiced.

For others, it’s the deep ever-abiding grief from a loved one lost to the epidemic more than 30 years ago … or the more than 15 million lives lost in Sub-Saharan Africa where far too few have access to the medication that many Americans have free access to.

For all of us, World AIDS Day is a day of reflection.

… to remember that the AIDS epidemic did not have to happen.

… to remember that HIV and AIDS exist more so because of stigma, prejudice, and poor public policy, and less so because of a medical cure.

… to remember that HIV and AIDS are preventable and treatable, less so because of the scientific advances, and more so because of people who had the will to fight and the courage to believe they did not deserve to be left to die.

On this World AIDS Day, we remember, we reflect, and we continue the FIGHT …


In the United States ...

  • Approximately 1.2 million people in the U.S. have HIV. About 13 percent of them don’t know it and need testing.
  • HIV continues to have a disproportionate impact on certain populations, particularly racial and ethnic minorities and gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM).
  • In 2021, an estimated 32,100 new HIV infections occurred in the U.S.
  • Estimated new HIV infections declined 12% from 36,500 in 2017 to 32,100 in 2021.
  • In 2021, 36,136 individuals received an HIV diagnosis in the U.S. and 6 dependent areas.
  • HIV diagnoses are not evenly distributed across states and regions. The highest rates of new diagnoses continue to occur in the South.

Globally ...

Number of People with HIV—There were approximately 39 million people across the globe with HIV in 2022. Of these, 37.5 million were adults, and 1.5 million were children (<15 years old). In addition, 53% were women and girls.

New HIV Infections—An estimated 1.3 million individuals worldwide acquired HIV in 2022, marking a 38% decline in new HIV infections since 2010 and 59% since the peak in 1995. New HIV infections, or “HIV incidence,” refers to the estimated number of people who newly acquired HIV during a given period such as a year, which is different from the number of people diagnosed with HIV during a year. (Some people may have HIV but not know it.) Women and girls accounted for 46% of all new HIV infections in 2022.

HIV Testing & Knowledge of HIV Status—Approximately 86% of people with HIV globally knew their HIV status in 2022. The remaining 14% (about 5.5 million people) did not know they had HIV and still needed access to HIV testing services. HIV testing is an essential gateway to HIV prevention, treatment, care, and support services. The global target for HIV status awareness is 95% by 2025.

Source: HIV & Aids Trends and U.S. Statistics

UPLIFT Monthly Trans/Nonbinary Gathering Space

Join the UPLIFT monthly gatherings focused on trans, nonbinary, and other not (completely or at all) cis UUs. Join us to connect with other trans/nonbinary UUs and co-create support and community across our faith. All you need to bring is yourself (and other trans/nonbinary friends, if you’d like)!

These gatherings focus on getting to know each other and on sharing our collective dreams, ideas, and talents for this space. Expansive definitions of trans, nonbinary, and UU all apply. If you are interested in this space, and you aren’t cisgender, it’s a space for you.

NOTE: This space is intentionally multi-generational. It is open to and welcoming of trans/nonbinary elders as well as children, youth, and young adults. Standard UUA online safety measures apply to ensure all people under 18 are able to attend. We're glad to have you here!


The Five Practices of Welcome Monthly ZOOM Orientations

In 2019 we launched a new Welcoming Congregations renewal program called The Five Practices of Welcome Renewal. The goal of the program is to encourage congregations to practice Welcome every year, year-round.
As such, we are inviting religious leaders and congregants to join one (or more) of our Five Practices of Welcome Renewal - Monthly Orientation sessions.

  • Monday, December 18th
  • Monday, January 22nd
  • Tuesday, February 20th
  • Monday, March 18th 

All sessions are at 2pm ET / 1pm CT / 12pm MT / 11am PT
(except Feb 20th, which is a 1pm ET)


Watch a previously recorded session.

About the Author

Michael J. Crumpler

Rev. Michael J. Crumpler joined the UUA in early 2017. Shortly thereafter, he was ordained to Reverend in the United Church of Christ....


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