Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (02.20.12) - Friday, February 24,
African Americans in Southwestern Pennsylvania only represent
7 percent of the population, yet comprise 39 percent of those
living with HIV/AIDS, notes the Pittsburgh AIDS Task Force.
That high HIV/AIDS rate is exacerbated by poor access to
treatment, lack of trust in providers, being uninsured, and
the fear of HIV-related stigma, said Chuck Christen, PATF's
Terry Fluker, an HIV/AIDS activist who has had AIDS since the
1990s, has written, co-directed, and produced a play, "Who Me?
HIV/AIDS," to help turn those statistics around. The play,
being staged 4 p.m. Sunday at the August Wilson Center,
interweaves personal stories of people living with HIV/AIDS
with gospel, hip hop, R&B, and creative dance presentations by
local artists. Educational materials and condoms also will be
"It's a play about HIV/AIDS awareness education and
encouraging people to get treatment and care," said Fluker.
The play aims to reach "those having unprotected sex and those
with the disease who are not under treatment and care,"
including African-American men who have sex with men, he
noted. "Who Me?" also encourages testing for those who are
possibly unwittingly HIV-infected.
Co-sponsored by PATF and the HIV testing manufacturer OraSure,
the play targets all age groups and "brings forward the faces
of people living with HIV/AIDS," notes Christen. "It tells
them you need to be worried about this ... and that there's
Free tickets to "Who Me?" are available to anyone tested for
HIV this week at PATF, Persad Center Inc., or the Gay and
Lesbian Community Center testing sites.
For additional ticket information, contact Fluker at
firstname.lastname@example.org or Dorsey's Record Shop, 7614
Frankstown Ave., Homewood.