Monday, October 31, 2011

From the Big Chair and More

It's another Monday step off and COP 24/7 continues to roll on and out with the latest updates, observations, opinions and observations. Our mailbox is running over with so much e-mail it's about to reach that "enough already" point. Sifting and sorting through this mound of "this and that" can be time consuming but nevertheless we press on with the mission at hand. Just know that if you are thinking about it, most likely some where, some day or in some way, we will be talking about it here in this forum. Let's go get em....

Tales of the Cube

Last week COP 24/7 commented or as some of you shared, "ranted" about an issue that some don't understand or as some stated, "don't care about." I take all blow back and feedback without regrets, basically because if you gonna dish it then you better be ready to be dished. And this forum has had it share of both positive reinforcement and certainly those who didn't mind sharing their hate. After all it's still a free country or at least today anyway. The issues at hand was our observation which involved local ASO's, CBO's and NGO's that are apart of the services/funding mix of the Arkansas Department of Health. Within that post COP 24/7 poised scenarios and questions as to what we viewed as "ebbing and flowing" policies that often cause barriers and challenges in operating such a group. Our purpose with all our postings are to offer a credible position while encouraging interactive discussion and dialogue. In the past we've been accused of "airing dirty laundry" or taking a swift boat approach to a subject which is not our modius operandi.  But rather a provocateur in search of answers while calling to action anybody who finds our observations interesting. By no means should all fault lie at the foot stool of ADH, because what was called for was transparency, clear policy and procedure with a healthy dose of accountability. This goes for not only ADH, but anyone attempting to do business with this agency or work that is being done on behalf of their organizations stakeholders. It's no secret that funding shifts and reductions are the order of the day and every dollar will need to be maximized in addressing HIV/AIDS in this city and state. In case you don't know and most likely you don't, each of you can have an impact on how these resources are utilized. However, if you sit back and decide that someone else knows better, then you can't say much when a decision has been made for you that you don't like. Get involved, be engaged and by all means stay locked and loaded to COP 24/7 because we will keep bringing it day after day after day...

NYC Casting Call

 A NYC casting firm is looking for HIV+ men and women to participate in a photo shoot for an HIV medication. No modeling experience is necessary, but you must be HIV+ (we will need a doctor’s note before the shoot), be responsible/reliable, like having your picture taken and be comfortable with other people knowing your hiv status. We cannot hire anyone who has modeled for any type of pornography.
Pay is $5,000 which includes any travel time, your time at the photo shoot and the right to publish the photo for 3 years in any print, digital and electronic media. Excludes broadcast and billboards only.
OR $7,500 if the client wants exclusivity (that means you can’t model for other HIV products during the 3 years that the ad is running)
According to the e-mail, here's what they are looking for in a possible candidate:
Everyone should be naturally thin; healthy but not overly defined muscles. The ages are a suggested range, so if you fall a couple of years on either end, still apply.

1. Latin and African American Women ages 35-45
2. African American Men ages 20-30
3. Caucasian Men ages 45-55
The photo shoot will be in New York City (we handle travel arrangements and costs). The shoot is tentatively scheduled for late November/early December. You must live in the US and either be a citizen or have current working papers
Please e-mail before 11/4 and include the following:
-A few recent photos (you can even send cell phone photos, just try to send ones that are clear and look like you). Send close-ups and a full-length.

-Your name

-Phone numbers where you can be reached

-Where you live (what town or city)
-If you have modeled for any HIV medications before (and if so tell me about it)
What happens after you submit your photos? I will forward them to the people who will choose who they would like to work with. If you are chosen, I will be in touch with you. If you were not chosen, you will not hear back from me. I will hold a casting in NYC and a few other cities, so you may get an email asking you to come in (if you live nearby) to have more photos. Here's a direct link to Ms. Lazars website with the info on it:  COP 24/7 assume no liability with this search and encourages any possible participants to properly vet this offer when applying.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Fastball Friday

The Human Rights Campaign's website is a full service portal of organizational information, links, call to actions, and viola,Video's. COP 24/7 always in search of "trending" for our readership, continues to discover the latest means of sharing vital messages. Unfortunately Arkansas has elected to deny the LGBTQ community any chance of marriage equality, It's important to know that there are still allies who are taking a stance on the issue no matter what's happening in each state respectively. I don't get to catch the MoNique show often, but this Academy Award Winning actor is a powerful voice in dealing with a range of social justice issues on her television show and personal appearances. Of course each of you can make your own You Tube videos to share your thoughts with COP 24/7. We would love to host a week full of home grown statements of what's on your agenda for the LGBTQ community and beyond. Put those web cams to use and get us some video responses to share with the community.  Do it today!

Chasing Cornelius 2.0

I don't seek any pity for being me. I've taken the position that my life is not all about the destination, it's about the journey. A journey that I've shared with your dear readers in this forum and numerous activities beyond. Many of you who interact with me often refer to "that thing that you do" while often being amazed that sometimes I do it in the public eye. However, as I reach back through my memory bank I realized that I've been public for some time and it looks like there's no turning back now. For myself each day breaks with something new, something that I had not considered, a new way of viewing matters or defining/redefining all things "Cornelius." Recently I was discovered by non other than the "NAACP," after all these years! I couldn't believe that I had received a what, "membership invite." Really NAACP, it took this organization all of 30 years to decide that maybe I might want to be a member of this long standing group. After reading the "welcome" info, I had to chuckle to think perhaps since they have become a more "gay friendly" organization with a declining membership, maybe just maybe I was finally being let in on a technicality. How could have the NAACP not discovered me before now, since I have been of the "colored" persuasion for as far as I can remember. Not to mention that I been involved in all types of civil and human rights issues with other groups and organizations, but apparently even though I attended local meetings, my participation wasn't noteworthy until now when they need a membership infusion. Well, I guess it's good to finally be noticed. Speaking of being noticed, just as I had that nuance NAACP moment that as I continued to look through the mail stack that I saw an invite from non other than the National Riffle Association! WTF is going on with the mail today I muttered. Is everybody needing members these days? Of course this piece surely warranted me to open to find out what does an NRA member get for that membership. Well, along with the satisfaction of your right to bear arms provision, there's a membership card, subscription to newsletters, $5,000 accidental Death and Dismemberment coverage at No Charge? Plus some additional insurance called ArmsCare to cover you choice of weapon from theft, damage or loss. There are other membership levels that have other perks for your choosing. But ultimately the leadership of the NRA wants to know that they are with you and got your back. As a valued member they've arranged "member discounts" on everything from Hearing Aids to Hotel accommodations at Super 8, Knights Inn or Wyndham property! What a deal. Alright, enough was enough and I had to place that invite into the "file 13" basket while I moved on the more important stuff like say, Mr. Visa, MasterCharge or Mistah AMX. Stay locked and loaded as I'm sure that we'll have more folks Chasing Cornelius. 

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Uncut and Untamed COP 24/7

As much as possible COP 24/7 offers updates, breaking news, opinions and observations that we recieve and post without much editing or slicing and dicing. We make every attempt to allow those who share their info to let their "words" speak for themselves. Of course, if contributors suggest that we edit or alter, we take the liberty to do so. But usually we present it in the manner that it's submitted, always acknowledging that it's in a "sic" format, which means that's the way they wrote it. So with that said, lets go to the boards for the latest...

AIDS Walking in Central City 2011
This item fell into our in-box and the message sent seemed to be a "SOS" for this effort which we found interesting:

"Reminder you about the AIDS WALK 2011 it is less than 30 days away if you do not want to donate on line you can send a donation by mail to Bill Holt Arkansas AIDS Foundation 523 S. Louisiana St. Suite 217 Little Rock, Ar. 72201. Made the donation to Arkansas AIDS Foundation and down on the memo it is for the Branches of Life walk team. And you could donate at the day of the walk Nov. 5, 2011 at the River Market District here in Little Rock. Reg. starts at 10:30 the walk begin at noon so please come and support the AIDS FOUNDATION. We need to have more PWA’S (peoples living with AIDS) and the gay community at the walk this year I could counts on two hands how may was there last year. Peoples we need to stand up for our self and PWA’S we are doing this for you more money we raise more we can help those in needs. There be something new at the walk this year there be a Tree of Life you can buy red ribbons and put names of PWA’S that gone before us we can not do the balloons release anymore so this is taking the place of that. My advocate group I started here at AIDS FOUNDATION is doing this so please come and support the AIDS FOUNDATION and my walk team Branches of Life. Thank you Bill Holt volunteer HIV tester, leader of both advocate group and walk team."

This forum was amazed as we did some fact checking to learn that indeed there was a lackluster turn out for last years event and from some indications this year isn't faring any better. COP 24/7 has paticipated in past events which left us somewhat bewildered and dismissed as organizers failed to acknowledge our contributions or support. However, our encouragement for other's to participate has never waivered and again this year we are asking our readers to get busy organizing teams, making pledges or volunteering in some capacity. Why are their litterally thousands in the streets for a breast cancer walk and this event gains only a tea cup of participants. It's been stated previously that planning events takes severe planning and publicity in this community. Also the Arkansas AIDS Foundation in itself may have to accept some responsibility for the low response to this event. If AAF wants to reach people, then that organization has to make a more aggressive attempt to outreach as well as be more engaging to possible donors or sponsors. It's understandable in this age of reduced staffing, lack of volunteers and other funding that groups find themselves without strategies or development processes. Even then with all the gadgets, gizmos and digital wizardry that exist they somehow don't get the message. COP 24/7 does it ever loving best to get the info out their and tries to share it across our platforms. Let's not forget that HIV/AIDS has not gone away and every dollar counts. All monies raised this year will go to the Arkansas AIDS Foundation’s newly designed MAPS program (Medical Assistance Program Services). This program is a privately funded source, which is designed to help people with HIV/AIDS, who were discharged from being able to acquire medical services from other sources because their income levels were over $21,660 annually, even though most had no type of medical insurance and no place to turn for medical assistance. These medical services include, but not limited to: Physician’s visits, Laboratory work and payments of life sustaining medications and/or co-pays for these meds monthly. A Wine and Cheese Reception, 11.5.11 will support the event featuring a silent auction at the Rogers House, 410 W 18th. Tickets are $20.  Call 376.6299 for more info.

Healthy Halloween Extravaganza

From Arkansas Black Pride Program Manager: Kevin Holmes

 In our efforts to address the HIV/AIDS and STD epidemic in the state of Arkansas, I’m proud to announce that Little Rock Black Pride will be hosting a Costume party!!!!! As you know many people celebrate Halloween in a big way. We thought, why not bring health into the picture and have a healthy, safe, and fun alternative. It is free to public. There will be free HIV testing going on. There will be a $10 gift card given to the first 60 people tested. This is a grown folks affair so u must be 21 and up to enter. If you’re not in costume you will have to donate money!!!!!!! Call 501-612-3361 for more info.

Laquinta Inn & Suites Downtown

617 South Broadway, Little Rock, AR 72201
Sunday, October 30 at 6:00pm - October 31 at 12:00am
The Arkansas Department of Health will be offering free HIV testing. If you would like to assist with testing, please contact me as soon as possible. Testing hours will be from 7:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Trending Wednesday

The COP 24/7 In-Box topped 375 e-mails this week with every type of message, advertisement, alert, campaign begs and all manner of information overload. What can we say, it's a digital data dump that we are still plowing through. In the meantime, as we sift and sort all this stuff, there were quite a few items that reached out and got our attention to share with our readers. So without any more small talk, let's go with it...

The Little Rock Water Flush

We take having an abundance of water oh so for granted. It keeps flowing out of those faucets, fountains and flow heads almost magically without any thoughts that there may only be so much of this living giving substance to go around. And we are all are gulity of not thinking that the very water that we use each day is actually a precious resource that we really need to consider conserving. In a recent article in the Arkansas Democrat Gazette(11.23.11) the issue of Central Arkansas' Water's Water Wise program cited that the utility was now offering free irrigation audits as well as other informational tools to help endusers understand their usage. According to the utility since 2010 they have been offering a disconted rate to consumers using less than 2,300 gallons a month. Meanwhile, the utility has added a 30 percent surcharge to residential and sprinkler accounts who are using a whopping 25,000 gallons of water a month. Wow! Even more surprising was the attitude that those who are keeping those lawns"oh so green" didn't seemed to be bothered or even actually concerned that even though Central Arkansas has an abundance of water, their "water footprint" should not be called into question. Really? Even though our reservoirs and watersheds are abundant at this time, do these folks believe that having a disregard for our resources for the sake of winning "Yard of the Month" is being responsible to the planet. If they only could realize that reports that "884 Million people lack access to safe water supplies; aproximately one in eight." Also,"the UN estimates that by 2025, forty eight nations, with a combined population of 2.8 Billion, will face a freshwater "scarity" or "stress" And finally for those who just don't have a clue about water usage should understand that even those five minute showers uses more water than a typical person in a developing country slum uses in a whole day. Think about it and turn off those sprinklers during peak periods and discover ways to conserve. Just because its here today, doesn't mean that it will be here always. Check out for facts, resources and links.

Train the Trainer for CAR’s Safe Schools Program

November 19, 2011
12pm-3pm CAR offices
800 Scott St. (inside First Presbyterian)
Little Rock

CAR is working to reach out to every school district in the state in an effort to increase their cultural competency regarding their LGBTQ students, parents and co-workers. In an effort to significantly increase our ability to reach more of these schools in a shorter time span we are conducting this training.

If you are interested in participating in this program or need more information please call 501-244-9690 or email

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Processing from the Prism

COP 24/7
Can We Talk: Voices from the Cube

On yesterday we began processing our thoughts and observations concerning the in "stasis" Little Rock Black Pride, its newly minted re-branded version Arkansas Black Pride and the intersections of local groups funded through the Arkansas Deparment of Health. According to ADH website, The Arkansas Department of Health HIV Prevention Program provides state leadership and support for development, implementation, and evaluation of evidence-based HIV prevention programs serving persons affected by, or at risk for, HIV infection. Furthermore, The HIV Prevention Program achieves this mission through policy development, grantmaking, training and technical assistance, collaboration and partnerships with community based organizations and other state agencies. Also highlighted on the site is the assertion that the HIV Prevention Program is currently working in concert with the Arkansas Minority Health Commission to establish synchronized efforts in HIV Prevention in the populations and geographic areas of Arkansas where epidemiological data shows the greatest need. This partnership is focused on facilitating a coordinated statewide community response to HIV/AIDS that will ultimately lead to fewer Arkansans contracting HIV and better health care and quality of life for those living with HIV/AIDS. Sounds good doesn't it? And basically its factual except the fact that what COP 24/7 has discovered is that all that glitters isn't gold.

 Even as these statement appear on their website as a statement of truth it appears that this is not quite how matters transpire internally. It's no secret that over the years there has been strained relationships between consumers and stakeholders with the HIV/STD/Hepatitis C Section within ADH. Also, their described partnerships have been the subject of scrunity and subjected to heated debates as well as idle gossip that has not always put the section in the best light. Most folks have all but forgotten 2006's "Lola Gate" which resulted in five months of prison time for former HIV Program Administrator Lola Thrower who did some fancy cooking the books to the tune of about Ten grand. That messiness also took down a few others and crashed and burned the emerging Positive Voices program which was most promising. Book ending that fiasco has been flashpoints of quasi statistical reporting, revolving door personnel, and leadership vaccums. In our opinon, it appears that their's a culture of territorial professionals whom seem to be clueless as to what's going on in the section from policies to procedures.

Therefore if there's dysfunction among these folks internally how can they truly be "facilitating  or coordinating" anything. Case in point is the fact that current Section Chief Tina Long responded to a proposal from The Living Affected Corporation by stating that their had been a policy change in which local community based organization could no longer submit unsolicited proposal without a "request for application" being offered. The policy was to go into effect July 1, 2011. However, when questioned about this policy and requested to produce the document, Ms. Long is still searching for a hard copy to present. Really? Still searching for it?  If this isn't enough by all appeareances a "proposal" from "Little Rock Black Pride" was funded after the so-call policy implementation, also Better Community Developer was also awarded funding from a proposal also "after" the July deadline. To add more complexity to this mash up is the fact that questions now abound about reciepts, invoices and possibly phoney statements conjured up to reflect charges incurred by...wait for it...Little Rock Black Pride! We know that ADH doesn't "micro-manage" their grantees but one would think with this groups track record a closer oversight would have been in order. Especially since this entity was also doing a side deal with another local CBO who fronted LRB the funds to proceed with their event while ADH hastily processed their proposal as a reinbursement tool for expectations that now can not be accounted for or either came up short.

 Questions: Where is the copy of the policy that Section Chief Long was so quick to quote from?  If there was such a policy, why were other groups still funded?  Will Mr. Rogers be questioned as to validity of his submitted invoices and reciepts? Who is responsible for the $4000 advance? Was their a "Memorandum of Understanding" anywhere? This is a OMG moment! So many question that are so ripe for a Freedom of Information inquiry. Anybody got any other questions, because you just can't make this stuff up. Who would believe it? Stay tuned, we are still processing it all....

Monday, October 24, 2011

The Monday Prism

COP 24/7 Special
Can We Talk: A Rubik's Cube in Motion
A Rubik's cube is a complex gadget game that allows the player to twist and turn the module into various configurations in search of the right combination to unite each side into a solid color. It's a mind bender and certainly takes some concentration as well as effort to navigate the rotations to gain the final results. I've enjoyed some game playing over the years ranging from assorted card games to the proverbial board games such as Monopoly or the ultimate basic game of checkers. However as life would have it, each day we find our selves embroiled in some type of "game playing" or either being "played" in some fashion or another by either individuals close or perhaps entity's afar. Often this type of gaming can become frustrating, challenging and mind blowing as we try to unravel just what's the purpose of the exercise or the game that's being played. This week I received a notice concerning an upcoming Healthy Halloween event involving an entity titled "Arkansas Black Pride." On the surface I thought nothing of it except that it was another invite to a local event, however it's what lies beneath the surface is what I find most interesting and could be of interest to you too. In full disclosure, I was asked to assist with a table display for the Living Affected Corporation during the annual Little Rock Black Pride event held last summer. I was aware of this event and had commented numerous times in this forum on the structure, leadership, programming and it's funding source through the Arkansas Health Department. During that time, I had limited knowledge about the group despite efforts to be more engaged or offer my self as a source of expertise as an event producer. Yet it just happened that I found myself participating in this years event which again raised my eyebrow on the inner workings of this group. Not to mention the factor of what was "suppose to be going on" juxtaposed to what was "stated would be going on," by organizers. From my vantage point what I saw was a rather disjointed, directionless and a rather under performing event that fueled my speculation to why this event which could have a redeeming value appears to mired in poor planning and certainly lackluster execution. Even more disturbing is the fact that I've learned that many "games" were being played by President Stanley Rogers and ADH personnel as others involved may have been "played" in the meantime. So what's going on here? Well there's numerous sides to this "Rubik's cube" beginning with this group being perceived as a viable organization with any depth, mission or direction despite its affiliation with The International Federations of Black Prides. I have conversed with IBP originator, Mr. Earl Folkes who gave me the vibe that he was not amused to say the least at the groups carrying on. I believe that such an entity is worthwhile and could serve as a positive community outlet across the board. Unfortunately instead of being a group that "partied with a purpose," what evolved was more " circut party" wannabe than anything else. The Black Expo was a good idea, but haphazardly organized with mucho promises to fellow group members that didn't materialize as they were left out of the info loop. Plus expectations to its primary funder the Arkansas Department of Health that now can't be firmly substantiated and may result in some further investigation. Therefore, I understand why Folkes pursued a name switch while naming new program manager, Kevin H. as an effort to re-brand the group. All these good intentions are just fine and dandy, but the facts state that Little Rock Black Pride as it was known has been problematic in the past and this year seems to be even more questionable. And boy do we have some questions and maybe you do too. Stay tuned because we're just getting started....     

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Friday Mash UP

Is it really already the third week of October and those damn holiday's are back again right around the corner? Well apparently yes and COP 24/7 is in full swing as we continue to bust it out on a daily basis to bring you the latest LGBTQ news and beyond. It's all here and if we don't have it, we can get it and get back to you. Never fear, COP 24/7 is here! Are you ready? Alright let's go in head first....

Debit Me Crazy: Fees come to your debit card

Say it ain't so!! But unfortuantely those dastardly bank folks who just won't stop finding ways to "nickle and dime" their customers to death are at it again. With passing of federal regulations that would cap some fees that banks would have to be subject too have decided that this legislation needed to be offset with the institution of "fees" for using your debit card. These fees range from $3.00 to $5.00 for using your debit card. Often these charges are being put out their by those major banks such as Bank of Ameirca and such who appear to have no clue that the American public is at the "enough is enough" point. Not to mention that these banks have millions of dollars stuck in reserves while attempting to legally "rip off" off their customers with reoccuring fees that don't appear to be necessary. At this point my bank, Arvest is not joining the fray but I'm watching every turn of this tactic to double dip into the consumers pocket. If you look closely, your money is getting no bang in the interest department and depending on your program you could be paying service charges for stop checks, inquires, statements and of course checks, if you still use them. Shame on these bankers that got bail outs and now decide that they need a fist of a few more dollars as a way to add insult to injury. If you don't like what your bank is doing, don't forget that you can "fire" the son a bitches with a quickness!!

The Cain Factor

It's no doubt that the we are now prepping for the the political thunder dome of 2012 as the GOP Presidential candidates embark in hand to hand combat for their parties nomination. At present its Herman Cain who seems to be unsettling the candidates field with his shoot from the hip, cut to the right and hit em between the eyes verbiage that gets rousing applause during debates and for reasons unknown to me, selling out events including one to take place in Northwest Arkansas. Cain has found himself climbing in the polls meanwhile besting co-front runner Mitt Romney with his brand of flame throwing rhetoric such as "being gay is by choice," and "blame your own self if you are not rich or have a job." He's lobbed other flaming rhetoric such as his position that those in the Occupy movement shouldn't be raging on Wall Street but rather should be at the gates of the White House. Let us not forget his stance on Muslim's, his notion that the catchy but flawed "9-9-9" tax send up is really a solution to the tax mess and last but not least pundits continue to cite that Cain doesn't appear to have a "real" campaign but rather a book tour wrapped in the guise of running for president. So exactly what the Cain is this fella all about to get so much attention? Its his no-nonsense approach that's been described as the "like ability factor," and simplicity to the issues that keeps getting the kudos. He's even stated that he didn't really know who some of the world leaders were and if that's the case then most likely I would assume that means no foreign policy developed. After all Mr. Cain did quip that "America is too uptight" as he mused that perhaps he would like to see an electrified border fence to keep out those pesky folks in search of the American dream. Of course, Cain dialed it back and said that's not what he really meant because it was all a "joke." In my opinion, It was so funny that I forgot to laugh, Mr. Cain. Hello electorate, if you fall for this joker then have mercy on this candidate when the Obama juggernaut rolls out in 2012. It's going to truly be a thunder dome of epic proportions.

Ladies and Gentlemen: Warick Sabin thows hat into the ring

Warick Sabin? Who? Well in case you don't know who this gentlemen is and most likely you don't, he's been here, there and everywhere from appearing on AETN's Arkansas Week to editing the Oxford projct and certainly seen among the city's social climbers as well as movers and shakers. And now he want to be a legislative Represenative in District 33. With that said, let the fundraising began with an outing being held at 10.27.11, 5:30 to 8:30 pm at SWAY, 412 Lousisiana. The invite that I got was sprinkled with current supporters including that of Jay Barth who was bamboozled and out flanked in his bid to represent the people in the last election cycle. It seems that this cadre of supporters are ready to do a cash dash for Sabin even though as I checked his website, I saw no positions, policy mentions or what he proposes to do in office except be "focused on listening to their concerns and priorities." He states that he will be a "positive leader" who is caring, thoughtful, and hard working represenative who will move Arkansas forward." Really? Sound good. So exactly what do you stand for Mr. Sabin and what do you propose will "move Arkansas forward?" Can we get some details or at least some "bullet points," that we can chew on until you actually get really focused. Alright, you just kicked off your campaign in September, so we'll have to wait for that other important stuff while you go into collect mode first. In the meantime, if you want to contribute, need signs or volunteer check out his cute website for that info at

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Over the Mid-Week Bounce

Many of you have often poised the question, "juist how do you do all that you do?" When I think about it, the answer is some days I'm not sure and other days I just don't think I can keep doing it. Then I realize that I simply must do it because someone has too. Producing this content as well as the travel, assorted meetings, deadlines, Board of Director responsibilities and such often pushes me to the limit. However, key elements to makingt it all happen is comittment, vision, empowerment and ultimately my personal "will" to go the distance. It boils down to the either a "put up or shut up," stance that comes into play no matter what project or organization you are working within. As they say that "it takes a village.." it really does and then some. So, as I've said more than times than I can count, "what you gonna do?" Now that I've put it out there once again, let's see what working or not working in the world around us....

NABWMT Evaluates Little Rock

The evaluations have been dropping liking it's hot, as those who participated in the 2011 Fall Midland/ national board meeting in Little Rock have weighed in on their experience while in the city. The survey asked attendees to comment on registration, acommodations, programming and overall overview of the event. On respondant summed up the event as "perfect," stating that their first visit to Little Rock not only met their expectations but "exceeded" their expectations. Paul C. of Los Angelas said" It was my first visit and I was overwhelmed at the welcoming atmosphere and the attractions that I got to visit." Other respondants cited that the "value" of the event especially the accommodations and food offerings was simply unbelieveable compared to other city sites that have hosted the event. NABWMT Co-Chair, Ken B. from Long Beach, California stated that "this is just amazing that a small group took on putting together such a great event. The amount of work and effort was definately evident."  Local organizers stated that every dollar was maximized in creativity, locales and programming that began with planning back in fall 2010. "We are so proud of the event as well as the fact that we learned so much in the process," said Shon D. " The 2012 national convention is scheduled for July 16-21, 2012 in San Diego, California. Registration and hotel information can be obtained from the groups website:  Check out the Twitter feed at   Since the event, a local effort to create an affiliate of the ogranization has been floated. If you are interested reach out to this forum for more info or directly at

COP 24/7 Special
Health Care Goes Digital Pushing Doctors to E-mail and Skype
( you can access the full story at written by Carey Goldberg)

No one could blame 3-year-old Anish for getting hysterical when he saw a doctor. He’d been through open-heart surgery and a skull operation. He knew that white coats often meant pain.
The first time his mother brought him to see Dr. Lester Hartman of Westwood-Mansfield Pediatric Associates, he had such a meltdown in the office that the visit had to take place in the parking lot, with the engine running, Anish in his carseat, and the pediatrician leaning his laptop on the driver’s side window as he took notes.
Clearly, this was not going to work. So these days, unless Anish needs to be physically seen, his parents schedule their appointments for evening hours. They sit at their home computer and they consult with Dr. Hartman, face to face, but not in person — by Skype.
Those Skype visits put Dr. Hartman way far out on the cutting edge of using technology to communicate with patients, even though Skype is now very old news in the general population. But he has high hopes that if health reform plays out as expected in Massachusetts, he’ll be able to ramp up Skype and use other electronic tools more creatively in his practice. (See his guest post below.)
‘Why hasn’t it gone further faster?’
Health care lags dramatically — perhaps “pathetically” is the correct adverb — behind other sectors in the use of the technological tools that now tend to dominate our personal lives — email, Skype, Facebook, smartphones. As Dr. Ronald Dixon of Massachusetts General Hospital put it: “Our patients are all Skyping with their grandchildren, so why can’t they Skype with us?”
But multiplying signals suggest that early adopters like Dr. Hartman may soon get a major boost from a political source: The looming state health reform. It aims to save money by shifting care away from “fee-for-service” payments for each procedure and toward giving doctors a “global” budget for a patient’s annual care.
Health insurers do not generally reimburse doctors for time spent emailing or Skyping or texting. When a doctor is paid for each bit of in-person care, but not for such “virtual” care, that’s a major disincentive to go virtual. On the other hand, if a doctor is paid an overarching annual sum for your care and will get bonuses for keeping you healthier and within your budget, checking in with you by email or Skype may suddenly become much more attractive.
Dr. Joseph Kvedar, director of the Center for Connected Health at Partners Healthcare and a practicing dermatologist, says that under the current health-care payment system, he emails constantly with his patients for free just because he sees it as part of caring for them. But “If the cash register never rang, I wouldn’t have a job. Right now, if you stop coming in to the office, I have a real problem. That won’t be the case anymore two years from now. The time is upon us that it will be as quaint as bank tellers.”
Signs the times are changing
Here’s one clear signal that reform could help push medicine in that direction: At a major Boston conference on technology in health care beginning Thursday, one session is billed as a debate over whether global payments are “the business model of the future” for “remote” patient care.
Here’s another signal: Dr. Neil Minkoff, medical director for the Massachusetts Association of Health Plans, says he sees three main reasons why doctors are headed toward more virtual care:
First, primary care doctors are in short supply and virtual tools could help spread a doctor farther. Second, the younger generation of doctors are digital natives. And third, “As we move from fee-for-service medicine to a global budget, physicians will have a greater incentive to use ‘tele-visits’ to monitor patients with chronic disease.”

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A 360 Global Positioning Post

It's been one hell of past three weeks for COP 24/7!  Talk about fast and furious, with multiple dashes of updates, breaking news and mash ups across the board. It seems that every body's got something to say, comment on or at least want to know what we're thinking. And you know how we love to share just what we are thinking with you, you and yes dear reader- you too!! It's not all said and done, because we're still ready to bring you more of what you should be looking for and then some...!!!

Spinning the Medicaid Big Wheel

Just a few days ago this forum dolled out a few news capsules concerning that all consuming program known as Medicaid. It's that troubled behemoth that continues to lurch and jerk across the landscape to varying degrees often leaving a wide berth of either satisfaction or dismay. What's even more distressing to the situation is the fact that now, Director Gene Gessow has decided to move on and make his way to another post in Massachusetts which will allow him to be more close to his family. Hired in 2009, Gessow has been a stalwart in state government holding a Director's post in the Arkansas Department of Human Services and subsequently Medicaid Chief. Gessow oversaw the development of a proposal Arkansas has made to switch from a fee-for-service model that Medicaid uses according to DHS spokeswoman Amy Webb. said the state will continue working on that proposal, despite Gessow’s departure. Gov. Beebe called Gessow a "visionary" while citing that his departure will not slow efforts to change the way government health programs pay for services which is slated for a July 2012 launch. Even though the impact of Gessow's leaving may be minimum, what troubles COP 24/7 is the Karo syrup approach that the State takes in finding permanent replacements for positions. Often positions remain vacant for long periods of time as "nation wide" searches take place. Marilyn Strickland, the chief operating officer of the division, will serve as its interim director until DHS Director John Selig chooses a permanent replacement for Gessow, said DHS's Webb.
“Marilyn has been there for more than 30 years. She knows that division really well, and she’s also really familiar with the payment initiative and the work we’ve done there,” Webb said. That may be so and of course that's all good, but will there be someone in place as the Affordable Care Act comes calling in 2014 and the tremendous amount of learning curves that will be needed to transform the system as thousands will use medicaid as a access point for health care. Advocates and activist are already beginning to assess what formulas will be used to maximize as well as leverage the usefulness of the legislation. It would behove the state to make sure that theirs a "Chief" in the house to be prepared to led the charge when it's time to deal with the situation at hand. Surely some one will take this $100,000 plus gig without blinking an eye. From our vantage point, it's going to be a doozy and getting ready now is better than waiting until then. Just Sayin.....

The Name Game Continues

Many of you learned from COP 24/7 about the recent acquisition of Off Center/Pulse and 610 Lounge to the management team owners of TRAXS formerly known as "Sidetracks." That deal is set to close come this November, with plans to close Pulse for a undetermined length of time as it is prepared to transformed into what we've learned as a new version of Miss Kitty's which at one time was a mainstay in the Backstreet concept. While you scratch your head or adjust your mouth, details about this transition are still in "transition." If you recall, the Backstreet version of Miss Kitty's was a  "sort of country meets gay kitsch" theme that many of us have forgotten and not sure if those nowadays are ready to embrace. Now, I will say that in other cities country theme outfits are common place, but they have wide appeal such as a Big D's Round Up, OKC's The Finishline or Saloon this or that. I've been to several across the country including Charlies in Denver, Colorado. It was off the chain with buckets of beer and plenty of boots and boys and that was just a week night. I know that there's been some "talk-talk" among patrons who wanted more of their Texas flavor to be injected into this city with lots of promises in tow. All of this even as TRAXS offers a "country night" each third Friday with low attendance or actual inter- city participation. Let's not forget that not even the local country association totally leveraged this opportunity nor has their appeared to be such a ground swell of support otherwise. Just for the record this town has had other country outlets such as Lil's Pub, Scandals, Chaps and Silver Dollar that have all gone to the great gay bar heap in the sky.  If I'm reading my "tea leafs" correct, most likely their has been "big talk" about bringing big names, Texas Ten Gallon Hats and turning the 7th street corridor into "Cedar Springs ala Little Rock." Alright, I'm all about change, upgrade and certainly bold new ideas, but I'm always wary of those who feel that they know what Little Rock needs with offers of "big promises" that are suppose to translate into big profits. Bring on Miss Kitty's 2011, it's be good to see what that old gal been's up to since we last saw her. If my sacred ruins are correct, I foresee a New Year Eve's opening. Stay tuned.... 

Application Available for 2012 Barbara Jordan Health Policy Scholars Program

Craig Palosky
(202) 347-5270

Tiffany Ford Fields
(202) 347-5270

The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation is accepting applications for the 2012 Barbara Jordan Health Policy Scholars Program. This summer program provides college students with an opportunity to work on policy issues in a congressional office and to learn about other organizations and agencies involved in health policy.

The Barbara Jordan Health Policy Scholars Program is open to individuals with a strong interest in eliminating racial and ethnic health disparities. Eligible candidates must be U.S. citizens who will be either a senior at or a recent graduate of an accredited 4-year college or university in the fall of 2012. Individuals with a graduate degree and those individuals currently enrolled in a graduate degree program are not eligible to participate. The application deadline is 5 p.m. ET on Friday, December 16, 2011. Application materials and more information are available online at
Selected Scholars will work in congressional offices in Washington, D.C. for 10 weeks and participate in weekly seminars and site visits designed to increase their understanding of the intersection between policy and the legislative process. Scholars will also have an opportunity to improve their writing and presentation skills. Housing is provided through Howard University, the Foundation’s partner in operating the program.
The Kaiser Family Foundation established the Barbara Jordan Health Policy Scholars Program to honor the legacy of Barbara Jordan – the first African American elected to Congress from Texas and a well-respected former member of the Foundation’s board of trustees. Barbara Jordan had a distinguished career exemplified by her tireless advocacy on behalf of vulnerable populations. She brought this passion to her work, inspiring other to become involved in addressing challenging health policy issues. In September 2011, Ms. Jordan was also honored with a Black Heritage series postage stamp in her honor. She is the 34th selected for the series and the first African American Congresswoman chosen to appear. Recently I was dumbfounded as I stood at the post office to hear some at the counter inquire as to who Jordan was and why was she on a stamp. I love the questions, "was she somebody?"  It saddened  me that my own people have such a lack of knowledge of their history which is to be celebrated. Its down right shameful to say the least. Especially since Ms. Jordan not only reached the pinnacles of power but navigated the system without enduring respite because she was a Lesbian.

For more information, please visit the program's website or contact Cara James, program director at the Kaiser Family Foundation at (202) 347-5270 or Jomo Kassaye, program manager at Howard University at (202) 238-2385.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Spin Down and Spin Out 2.0

I'm in a state of reflection and utmost satisfaction at the remarkable Fall 2011 Midland Regional and National Association of Black and White Men Together,Inc board meeting that took flight last weekend here in Little Rock. What I'm most proud of is my local core team who wasn't quite sure what they were getting into but took the leap of faith with me that no matter what I asked of them, they did their best to full fill the request.  James, P. Shon D., Jerry D., Kevin H. and my longtime companion JCM strived to do what it takes when pulling off any event, no matter how large or small. They demonstrated those elements that I've been preaching about for years and believe it or not, still preaching about. It takes commitment, time, resources and your treasure when you decide to be apart of the process. I owe each of you my sincerest gratitude for a job well done! Let's do another champagne toast soon.  From the onset I didn't know what to expect when asked to offer a proposal presentation during the 2010 Fall Regional in Oklahoma City. I took a city prepared goody bag, prepared notes and a bold sense of civic pride to that meeting. All the time thinking that even though we are not considered a "gay destination or gateway" my city still has something to offer anyone who discovers our home. Of course, there was the customary politeness, subsequent questions and then a decision that Little Rock would be afforded the chance to either step up or perhaps be "stepped on" by our visitors. I knew what a challenge lay ahead of me, but didn't blink while getting to work just after I returned home. For the record, I've attended numerous national BWMT conventions from Dallas to this year's locale in Las Vegas and I  fully understood that most folks had perceptions of my city/state and it was up to me to make sure that those perceptions steeped in either myths or fact would have to be dealt with from their arrival to their departure. It is this type of detail that would either make or break this event not to mention any event that is designed to showcase the LGBTQ community or otherwise. Yet within all this planning, I again found that even though I was able to gather local support, it was still fragmented and not full throated. Yes my readers I even had some whom shared their views that such an event was "stupid, racist and unwanted." However I've experienced this type of internal ignorance all my life and I'm not in the least surprised that it still exist. Unfortunately a few of my team mates were taken aback by such venom not to mention misunderstanding this lack of insight within the gay community. Especially despite all of our accomplishments into the 21st Century, it is fellow citizens such as this that most likely had no part in making anything happen except inhabit the small minded closets that have not allowed them to define their authentic selves. Just so they know and I hope that they don't forget that those of us who take the challenge of speaking to power and advancing our causes continue to go the distance on behalf everyone, even when there's no one standing with them. Our success as a core team can be attributed to what we need more of in this community, basic leadership. No community can move forward without "leaders." There are probably many followers, but developing leaders is vital and incredibly needed at this junction in lieu of what it will take to sustain the ground that we've fought hard for and the forces that are gathering their critical masses to dismantle any progress. The members of NABWMT were astounded at the preparations, networking, resourcefulness and above all a perceived sense that Little Rock has not only come a long way but is determined to polish all its diamonds in the rough, while positioning itself to be a great city on the move. Members poised the question:  Is Little Rock ready to host a national convention of The National Association of Black and White Men Together?  Well, let's just say that we've proved that even though we are not a gay hot spot, with proper planning, oversight and a tremendous amount of grit we can do just about anything we want!  Thank you guys and gals for making this vision a reality and being apart of the change that we all want to see. If anyone is interested in attending the next national convention ( San Diego-July 2012) check out:  Can we get a Arkansas Delegation ready? There's already talk about a local affiliate, let's ride the wave that we've sent forth....!!!  

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Big Monday Spin Down

NABWMT 2011 Fall Midland Rocked and Rolled by local Host Committee

"By far this was one of the best Midland events that I've come to..." was just one of the compliments and comments that proclaimed the October 14-16 weekend event as a rousing success. The National Association of Black and White Men Together, Inc in conjunction with its Midland Regional meeting descended  upon Little Rock for the first time in the organizations 30 year history. Attendees were treated to music during Friday evening's registration from local artist Amber Edge and kicked the event into high gear with the "Welcome to Little Rock Mixer" which featured a complimentary sumptuous cocktail buffet, music and networking opportunities. Frederick Gentry, administrative assistant to City Manager Bruce Moore and City of Little Rock Board of Directors offered greetings from the city as well as a Certificate of Recognition in honor of the organization's visit. All roads led to the host hotel, La Quinta Conference Center as the event also offered HIV Testing to locals who supported the effort and a outreached to a attendees to the Rock City Corvette show also being hosted within the hotel. "I can't believe the local support and turn out that came to meet and greet us," said Pat Carron of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. " This is a paradigm shift for the Midland and Little Rock has demonstrated a new model for a successful event." Local notables such Mr. Diamond State Rodeo Association, Nathan James (pictured, upper right) welcomed visitors and informed them on rodeo activities in the city currently and the upcoming Rodeo in Rock 2013. D. Levi (pictured upper left), CEO of The Living Affected Corporation sponsored the evenings music mash up, spinning out musical selections from golden oldies which were crowd favorites to today's hot mixes. The vibe of the evening set the tone for bar crawling to local venues within walking distance to the hotel. Attendees had discovered 610 Lounge and made it a mainstay for off site visits. All agreed that The Lady Champagne ( Steve)  who also attended Friday night's meet and greet provided a welcoming attitude that set the tone to the entire weekend. Saturday's Midland Regional Board meeting concluded allowing members to prowl the city while checking out the Mosiac Templar Museum, Central High School Visitors Center,and River market area. A focal point of Saturday's tour was the Clinton Presidential Complex where the group lunched on the grounds as the enjoyed the unusually warm Arkansas weather.  The host committee worked diligently during pre-weeks to the event which began with a strategy sessions last October after a presentation proposal that was offered during the 2010 Midland Regional in Oklahoma City. "I've learned so much during this planning and much more about exactly what NABWMT stands for. It was hard work but so exciting at the same time. I'm so proud of what we did as a team," said Shon D.   James P. who brought the official greeting from the host committee said," It's been one of the best experiences I've had in some time. I'm thrilled that we could make it happen and let others know that we've got something to show off when visitors come to town."

Midland Regional  Members (left)
NABWMT Co-Chairs, Mack Scott (left) and Ken Baron (right)

Friday, October 14, 2011

The Friday Zip Line

It's all over but the shouting. Ladies and Gentlemen, plus those who haven't decided, it's 2011 Fall Midland and the national board meeting for The National Association of Black and White Men Together, Inc. It has landed in Little Rock for its three day run, October 14-16 with visitors decending on the La Quinta Inn & Suites (617 So Broadway, pictured) which is serving as the host hotel. The weekend is complete with a Friday evening Welcome to Little Rock Mixer, Saturday City Tour, Staurday evening Award Reception featuring keynote speaker, Mr. Jammal Clue of The National Alliance of States anbd Territoral AIDS Directors in Washington D.C,  Concluding the event will be Sunday's Grand Brunch at 610 Lounge. If you haven't saved the date then you should have. It's going to be a none stop weekend of meetings, memories and magical moments. Stay tuned to COP 24/7 for all the coverage and close up's coming next week!

LGBT History Month

Icons October 15th - 18th

Daniel Hernandez Jr. - Saturday, October 15th

"I don't think I'm a hero—the heroes are people who spend their entire lives trying to help others."
University of Arizona student Daniel Hernandez Jr. became a national hero when he saved the life of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. More
Langston Hughes - Sunday, October 16th

“What happens to a dream deferred? Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun? Or does it fester like a sore—and then run?” A celebrated poet and novelist, Langston Hughes was a major contributor to American literature. More
Frida Kahlo - Monday, October 17th
“Painting completed my life.”Frida Kahlo is a renowned Mexican artist. Her paintings have commanded higher prices than any other female artist.

David Kato - Tuesday, October 18th “
What they're doing now is to make it more harsh on people, anyone promoting homosexuality is being criminalized.”

David Kato was the founder of Uganda’s LGBT civil rights movement. His murder brought global attention to the plight of LGBT people in Africa. More

Do you have vounteer time available? Want to give back to the community and help with being the change that you believe should be happening? Then share your info with COP 24/7 in our feedback section. Only committed and flexible indiviudals need reply. If this is not you, then don't waste our time with false promisess and too much lip service. We've heard that, been there....

Thursday, October 13, 2011

An Autum Speaking Volumes

Its a new day and new posting from COP 24/7 with our unique take on the world around us and close to us. If you are not talking about us, then you should because we continue to bring you not only the news that you can use, but news that you will not see anywhere else. It's nothing but net, from COP 24/7!

AIDS in Arkansas

For many the subject of HIV/AIDS in Arkansas has become a topic that has become apart of their "rear view mirror" attitude concerning this health dilemma. However if you think that all is well and someone else is taking care of matters then you are seriously mistaken. Health activist and advocates continue to struggle with issues such as transportation, medication interruptions, ebbing and flowing policies, management changes and thresholds of educating law makers on the what's now in existence as well as what's now needed in the HIV/AIDS fight. Last week COP 24/7 reported that The Living Affected Corporation CEO, D. Levi addressed the Arkansas Black Caucus urging the body to become more engaged with sexual health issues in Arkansas while supporting a budget line item of $2.8 Million dollars for prevention. Although the group was presented with eye opening statistics some still mused on such items as "personal choices, family values and lack empowerment among those sexually active" as concerns that should be assessed. Levi agreed that each are up for consideration, but that the problem at hand must be fully embraced in order to save both additional lives and money. This scenario is one of many challenging barriers that persist as those who work on behalf of the HIV/AIDS community endure while pursuing better services, funding sources and access to medical care. It is vital that administrators, policy makers and movers and shakers become more vigilant as well as vocal concerning this issue. However, its also paramount that those living infected or affected join that chorus to maximize the message that nothing about HIV/AIDS is over and COP 24/7 is pledged to continue to spotlighting the plight of  AIDS in Arkansas.   

Chicago Center Awarded 1.67 Million for HIV

Chicago-(ENEWSPF)- Center on Halsted’s HIV testing and prevention services were awarded more than $1.6 million this week from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to expand its services for young African American and Latino gay and bisexual men. The award is part of the CDC’s five-year, $55 million effort to reach communities that face particularly high and increasing risk of HIV infection.
“HIV and AIDS is still a life-threatening epidemic – especially in the African American and Latino communities which are facing increasing rates of infection,” said Modesto Tico Valle, Center on Halsted CEO. “Thanks to this grant, we can empower members of our community most adversely affected by HIV and AIDS.” Little Rock could be so lucky to be able to approach putting together such an entity when it seems that local CBO's and ASO's can't even get dedicated board members or committed volunteers. Endeavors such as this will not be possible if local stakeholders and possible power brokers can't find common ground to make it happen. All COP 24/7 can really say is read this and keep wishing and hoping that someday their will be a breakthrough.
The award is for $1,665,590 and will be spread out over the next five years, with the Center receiving 590 $332,733 each year. The new grant will allow the Center to expand its outreach, education and testing services specific for young African American and Latino Men who have sex with men (MSM) between the ages of 13 and 29.
Specifically, Center on Halsted will launch the Mpowerment Project, a nationally-recognized HIV prevention program that mobilizes young gay and bisexual men to shape a healthy community for themselves, build positive social connections and support their friends to have safer sex. The project has been proven to reduce the rates of unprotected sex thus lowering the rate of HIV infection. Through the grant the Center will be able to engage 1,400 individuals over the next five years in the project.
As part of this project, Center on Halsted will partner with three local organizations: Chicago House Social Services Agency, which provides housing and supportive services for HIV-affected and at-risk individuals and families; Affinity Community Services, which is a social justice organization that works with and on behalf of Black LGBTQ communities; and the Chicago Gay Black Men’s Caucus, which works to reduce new HIV infections and bridge gaps across the Black MSM community via outreach, programs and more.
“This work cannot be done alone and we’re proud to partner with three organizations that are so committed to the community,” Valle added. The organizations will work together to both identify and engage individuals and also provide the expanded services.
“United we can help reach and empower more individuals, which will in turn save lives,” said Rev. Stan Sloan, CEO of Chicago House.
“This partnership will help us make real, significant progress against the growing challenges around HIV and AIDS within communities of color and help reduce the stigma associated with the infection,” said Kim Hunt, Executive Director of Affinity Community Services.
“We’re grateful to the CDC for recognizing the need to aggressively engage Black MSM into HIV prevention services, and standing with community-based organizations to make a difference,” said Keith Green of the Chicago Gay Black Men’s Caucus. "CBGMC is excited to partner with Center on Halsted on this effort."
Awards were given to 34 community organizations around the nation, including CALOR, which provides HIV/AIDS services to Chicago’s Latino community and is headquartered in Humboldt Park.
According to CDC estimates, the annual number of new HIV infections increased 48 percent among young black MSM between 2006 and 2009. Among Latinos, men who have sex with men are by far the most severely impacted, accounting for nearly two-thirds of all new infections. Nearly half of these infections among Latino MSM occurred in the youngest age group (aged 13-29). Transgender people are also severely affected by HIV. It is estimated that 28 percent of transgender people are HIV-infected.
Nationwide, gay and bisexual men (of all races) account for more than 60% of all new HIV infections. Center on Halsted currently provides comprehensive HIV/AIDS services for the entire community including rapid testing, counseling services and educational programs. In addition, the Center is home to the State of Illinois’ AIDS/HIV & STD Hot line, a free and anonymous service to provide callers with the most current and medically-accurate information about HIV/AIDS and other sexually-transmitted diseases. The hot line receives more than 14,000 calls a year. Services are available in both English and Spanish.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Wednesday Dash

Billboard's A- Go- Go

Jefferson Comprehensive Care System, Inc. (JCCSI) is a non-profit community health center that provides health care services. On behalf of JCCSI, I am writing to request your participation in an upcoming HIV/AIDS Billboard Campaign in central and southeast Arkansas. The theme for this campaign will be twofold: 1)Uniting to Prevent HIV/AIDS and 2) Uniting to Link Patients to Care. Our purpose is to raise HIV/AIDS Awareness, promote free testing and link HIV positive patients to care. The campaign will run during the month of December to coincide with World AIDS Day. We are targeting two primary groups through primary and secondary prevention: 1) persons unaware of their HIV positive status and 2) persons living with HIV who are out of care. Because of your work in the community, you and your organization have been identified to participate in the HIV/AIDS Billboard Campaign. Contingent upon the number of organizations who agree to participate in this collaborative project, the cost will be distributed among each organization with your company logo. This billboard campaign is a small part of the change were we can work together to decrease the number of new cases and increase the number of persons living with HIV to get into care. To discuss this campaign in further detail, please contact, or phone at 501-663-7166 by Friday, October 21, 2011.  Together, we can build a bridge for a brighter tomorrow.

Health Watch
The Medicaid Dilemma

Medicaid. The program that seems to always be in the news with both its fraud and fattening impact on the medical system is apart of the Affordable Health Care train that has left the station with a destination unknown. On the local front, advocates and activist are studying, assessing, ;discussing and disciphering just how it will unfold come 2014 as many will be available to access the system. Its a situation that is evolving and COP 24/7 will do it's best to keep up what really going on when exchanges intersect at Medicaid boulevard. In the meantime, check out this slew of items surrounding Medicaid that taking place across the land. Stay tuned...

Politico reports that despite its health reform efforts, Massachusetts is having trouble getting the federal government to issue a waiver for Medicaid programs. The Wall Street Journal reports on the growing needs in New York.

Politico: Medicaid Waiver Entangled In Safety Net In Massachusetts

The extension of the Medicaid waiver that allows Massachusetts to operate its landmark health care reform has hit a roadblock over funding for "safety net" providers, who are facing a growing demand for care even though the state's coverage expansion was supposed to limit their burden of caring for the poor (Millman, 10/11).
The Wall Street Journal: N.Y. Medicaid Rolls Reach 5 Million

For New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state policy makers, it's a milestone that comes with mixed blessings: five million New Yorkers on Medicaid. If New York hasn't already eclipsed the mark this month, it's nearly certain that the Medicaid program will get its five-millionth New Yorker this year, experts said. In August, there were 4,963,000 people enrolled in the government program for the poor and disabled (Gershman, 10/12).

Kansas Health Institute: Kansas Attorney General Announces $300,440 In Medicaid Recoveries

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt today announced that Kansas has recovered $300,440 as part of nationwide Medicaid settlements. The settlements are with three pharmaceutical companies that improperly charged Medicaid for off-label uses of anti-epilepsy drugs, according according to a release from Schmidt's office (10/11).

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Trending Tuesday 2.0

We're on the move again this week! Yes it seems that we just can't keep still for a moment but if you want to really know what's going on then you have to bust a move to stay locked and loaded for the latest updates. If you are not following us, a subscriber or regular reader, then by all means bookmark us or better yet get busy and join those who get our special brand of news, views and send up's. Make your move today!!!

The Name Game Part 2

Yesterday we spilled the beans about the power play from an outside entity that ushered a "cease and desist" name throw down to local venue, Sidetracks. The order asked the bar to comply with its trademark acquisition of the name, therefore causing the bar to have to find another title. Of course when we heard this dilemma, we thought of it as some type of prank, however, believe it or not boys and girls it was the real deal. In order to comply, COP 24/7 has learned that the new sir name of the former "Sidetracks" will now be known as "TRAXS." If that was not enough, the latest news that broke to the streets is the fact that owners of TRAXS also have made a power move their own by assuming the management of the seventh street corridor bars, Pulse/Off Center and 610 lounge. Each of these entities were opened by local entrepreneur and nightlife icon, N.Jones also owner of Triniti and Discovery complex. According to bar manager Todd Chambers., each entity will basically remain the same except that Pulse will be closed for a month and undergo a face lift. Future possible service additions include food service, entertainment upgrades and community projects. Chambers cited that he will an integral part of the operations and future detail announcement will be forthcoming. The official transfer will occur November 5. Community reaction has been positive with the belief that the new ownership will be beneficial to the LGBTQ community overall. 

Occupy Little Rock Rolls Out 10.15.11

Well better late than never. It seems that the "Occupy" movement has begun raising its head in Little Rock with a scheduled October 15 rally in the Rivermarket and subsequent march to the state capitol.
The group will marching west down President Clinton Ave to Stephen Inc., turning south at Stephen Inc. on to the Bank of America Building on Capitol Ave., then going west to the State Capitol passing the Federal building, Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Upon reaching the Capitol the group will return the River Market. As you may know or may not, this sign of civil disobedience began with the Occupy Wall Street effort that stepped off several weeks ago. From all appearances the NYC effort contained many factions with numerous agendas that run the gamut from union issues to fair housing concerns. Every mode of communication has been in play from social networks to signing online petitions.  All this is supported by the fact that their has been a total lack of accountability from those involved in the near collapse of the nations economic system, meanwhile enriching themselves to the tune of Millions of dollars. Also in this mash-up is the one percent of those who now "occupy" most of the wealth in this country and have taken the position that they are being targeted due to their success. Terms like "class warfare" and "soaking the rich" have become catch phrases used by many GOP stalwarts whom have become staunch allies of policies and tax loopholes that have provided a foundation as well as conduit to what most see as basic greed and corruption. Furthermore, Capitol Hill talking heads and presidential candidates have weighed in calling the protesters a "mob" attempting to pit Americans against Americans. No matter how you cut the mustard, the electorate has gone "Arab Spring" and it looks like there's no turning back. In the past COP 24/7 has thrown out the idea that it was "pitch fork and torch" time and it seems that folks across the landscape has tired of shell games, talk-talk and just plain old bullshit that has come from those "smartest guys in the room"types. There's so many angles to this democracy in action that one post just will not do. Especially when we haven't even touch on the what's brewing or not brewing in the African American community on this subject. But never you mind, we'll be posting on that flash point and all things that are being occupied. In the meantime if you feel so inclined or moved to share your solidarity with these ideas and concepts then its been suggested that you bring your signs, your indignation and a strong sense of justice! For more information:!/event.php?eid=187730267968845&notif_t=event_invite

Monday, October 10, 2011

COP 24/7 Rising to the Beat

Several years ago, I stated that "hear comes the that sound again." What sound you ask, it's the political drum beat and sounds of campaigns grinding their wheels forward with messages, sound bytes and spinned dogma that is filling the airwaves some 14 months prior to election day. Meanwhile, there's other churning going on with those folks "Occupying" cities across the nation including some planned event this weekend in Little Rock. Ladies and Gents, people are talking and I gather that its about to get loud. No matter the volume, COP 24/7 will be their to meet them toe to toe as we continue to update you on the who, what, when and whatever is going on. Are you ready...let's go get em....!

The Name Game

After some six and half years the north shore haunt, Sidetracks has been notified by some legal folks of another out of state entity that they must cease and desist with using the name, "Sidetracks," for their business. Of course, when I first heard this little nugget of info, I thought is this some more misinformation that gets circulated out of bounds. Well, NO. It's fact as recounted by management wished shared some of the details and the fact that as a business they must re-name and re-brand their entire operation. Furthermore, with that re-group they are not allowed to use any incarnation of their former selves. Otherwise, no mention of anything "side or tracks" in any combination according to the bigwigs making this trademark power play. As I further learned, management doesn't have a moment to waste in getting er done because it seems that time is of the essence, so they will need to deal with it with a quickness. May I suggest that they do a trademark search before they decide in order not to find themselves caught up in another name game paradox. Let's see, there's some catchy names that might be up for grabs. How about "Corner Pocket," "Badlands," The Detour," "Road House," or  "Saddle Tramps." Whatever the new christened name shall be, it will still be the place that almost everybody knows your name. When that new name rolls out, COP 24/7 hopes to have it first, so stay tuned!

Politically Speaking: What's the 411??

Since I mentioned that we are about 14 months out in the election cycle, I noticed that my inbox has been getting a steady flow of "all things political" information. Including info from the national entity, Stonewall Democrats which send alerts, updates, position statements and those all important "ask" e-mails seeking donations. Arkansas has a sub-chapter of the group designed to serve as the "LGBTQ Caucus" of Arkansas' Democratic Party and has recently been active with several activities which unfortunately I could not attend. I applaud their efforts to become more active especially as we  enter the impending "thunder dome" of politics to come in 2012. What I find most important is the fact that states are suppose to set a numeric goal for 2012 delegates attending the convention in Charlotte. As an individual who was among the thimble full of "out" candidates attempting to be a 2008 delegate, my experience was a learning curve to say the least. I navigated the system as best I could without any real mentor. Even though I attended local Stonewall meetings, made my intentions known and paid my own filing fees, I got little to no guidance from the group. Furthermore, no follow up on that experience or perhaps any direction as to how to better prepared next outing. Just so I'm clear, being a delegate to the convention comes at "your own expense." In other words it's up to you to make it happen including those aforementioned fees and travel. Even though the national entity cited that states have set numeric "goals" for 2012, unless their has been some change this wasn't the case for Arkansas. Also, if we are to have viable delegates then their now needs to be in place a mechanism to educate as well as financial support developed to assist them in the process. It's all going down in Charlotte next year and while I was their last week I saw that the city is preparing for the event across the board. The NSD 2012 convention is also taking place their prior to the National Democratic Convention in September under the management of CEO Stephen Kerrigan who is also openly gay.(pictured)  Therefore, I hope that Arkansas' Stonewall Democrats are considering putting together a delegate "boot camp" with both their national connections and local allies as well. Meanwhile discovering funding streams to support possible delegates. We're are going to be in for the fight to the bitter end as this Billion Dollar battle royale rolls out.

Networking in the City

Friday, October 14, 7 pm -until, LaQuinta Inn & Suites, 617 Broadway Street, 2nd floor conference room will be the site of the Welcome to Little Rock Mixer kicking off the Fall 2011 Midland/NABWMT weekend in Little Rock. Organizers have been busy with last mintue details and canvassing the city with invites. The event is open to everyone as we celebrate diversity and untiy in the state. A portion of $5.00 donation will be offset to support the services and advocacy mission of the organization. For more information or volunteer opportunities contact: