U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan (D)

WASHINGTON, D.C. — North Carolina U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan (D) will co-host a congressional roundtable on HIV/AIDS on Capitol Hill on Tuesday. The event, presented by the D.C.-based group AIDS United, seeks to bring a focus to the continued spread of HIV/AIDS in the South, according to an article in USA Today.

The group and its congressional allies want to raise awareness of the problem, including highlights on prevention efforts and a severe lack of HIV specialists across the region. Hagan is joined as co-host by Alabama’s Sen. Jeff Sessions (R) and U.S. Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) and Hank Johnson (D-Ga.).

“This disease is no longer a metropolitan problem,” Sessions told USA Today. “In fact, infection rates in the rural South are among the fastest-growing in the country.”

The focus on HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment has been at the forefront of many North Carolinians minds since the state’s initial funding crisis for the AIDS drug assistance program in 2010.

Currently, a small group of four AmeriCorps volunteers working in tandem with AIDS United and the North Carolina Community AIDS Fund, are working to raise awareness on HIV prevention. They’ve released a trailer for a forthcoming full-length public service announcement. You can watch the video below or at their website where you can also learn more about the film’s participants.

Matt Comer

Matt Comer previously served as editor from October 2007 through August 2015 and as a staff writer afterward in 2016.