News Release


City to launch billboard campaign for African-American HIV/AIDS State of Emergency

The City of Houston and Eller Media will unveil an HIV/AIDS awareness billboard campaign targeting African-Americans, from 10 a.m. to 10:45 a.m., Tuesday, July 18, outside City Hall, 900 Bagby Street. Eller Media donated the use of 150 billboards for the project.

The billboard campaign is one of the public information objectives outlined in the Mayor’s HIV/AIDS State of Emergency Call to Action Plan, a strategic plan to address the HIV/AIDS crisis and mobilize the African-American community. The HIV prevention messages are designed to increase levels of awareness of HIV/AIDS, encourage risk reduction and promote early HIV/STD screening. AIDS is the leading cause of death among African American men and women between the ages of 25-44. African Americans represent 61 percent of the newly reported HIV infections in Houston. Mayor Lee P. Brown declared a state of emergency on December 1, 1999.

Scheduled participants include Mayor Pro-Tem Jew Don Boney, Jr., Chair, Mayor’s HIV/AIDS State of Emergency Task Force; M. desVignes-Kendrick, MD, MPH, Director of the Houston Department of Health and Human Services; David Benson, Office of El Franco Lee; Ernie Jackson, Vice President and General Manager, ClearChannel Communication; Ella Hines, R.N., Vice-Chair, Ryan White Planning Council; Dena Gray, Community Co-Chair, Houston HIV Prevention Community Planning Group and Steven L. Walker, HIV Prevention Program Manager, Houston Department of Health and Human Services.