Houston Department of Health and Human Services

News Release

November 19, 2003

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

World AIDS Day program to include poinsettia AIDS ribbon, candlelight vigil

A large red poinsettia AIDS ribbon, brief speeches by four people living with HIV or AIDS and a candlelight vigil will highlight a program sponsored by the Houston Department of Health and Human Services (HDHHS) to observe World AIDS Day on Dec. 1.

The free event will be held downtown at Jones Plaza, 600 Louisiana, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

M. DesVignes-Kendrick, director, HDHHS, will address event participants before the vigil. Bridgjette Taylor and Scott Winnet will sing in remembrance of people who have died of AIDS and those who are infected or affected by HIV or AIDS.

World AIDS Day is organized annually to raise public awareness of the impact that AIDS has in society and help prevent the spread of HIV. The red ribbon is the international symbol for AIDS awareness.

A total of 20,492 AIDS cases have been reported to HDHHS since the epidemic started about 22 years ago. Cases of new HIV infection reported to HDHHS between January 1999 and June 2003 total 7,244.

For more information, call HDHHS’ Bureau of HIV/STD Prevention at 713-558-9638.

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