Friday, June 08, 2012

June Movements

June has busted out all over and its going like gang buster!  And there's way too much going on for COP 24/7 not to keep bringing you our special brand of updates, links, websites, videos and all that goes with it. No time for the idle chit chat, let's go to work...


The emerging entity STRILITE, the newly founded organization formed under the auspices of the D-Up HIV/ AIDS prevention program being facilitated by The Living and Affected Corporation has been formally reconized as a registered non profit by the Secretary of States office. According to information released from the group, the effort was pursued to complete the structure process of the organization including a new office contact number. Since being notified, the group was able to submit proposals to the Arkansas Department of Health in response to their HIV Awareness Day Request for Proposals. The proposal is based around their impending HELP Fair scheduled for September 28, 2012. Pictured from left: Will T., Kevin H., ADH Program Manager Ms. Courtney Hampton, J. Griggs, D. Lopp.
Under the prevention grant awarded to The Living and Affected Corporation, the group Strilite was designed to continue to address ongoing issues and barriers of HIV and AIDS, especially in the people of color communities that have been disportionately impacted by the disease. Within the scope of that award the prevention programming attached was centered on a diffusion of evidenced based platform entitled the D-Up program better known as "Defend Yourself." The basis of the community based intervention called for a group of black gay men to serve as conduits within the same gender loving community to discover "Opinion Leaders" who will facilitate communicating prevention messages to their inner and extended networks. As the program has developed, the core group has agreed that the branding and group philosophy will be central in their appeal and ability offer positive images that they have idenitifed as "missing in action" among Black gay men. During the course of their training, the men of Strilite have also received additonal training resulted in being certified HIV testers as well as introduction to the elements of the peer to peer certification program.

The name is rooted in the foundation that each participant had a shared vision of "striving for enlightenment." "We have to deal with our present as it begins to impact our future," said J. Griggs about the group. "It's really important that we be apart of decision processes and the policy making that will affect our lives." he concluded. Although the genesis of the organization evolved from the D-Up curriculum, group participants felt it imperative that they forge a self identified group that would resonate among its peers. Esepcially since such a viable group didn't exist in the city. Also the group wanted to play a significant role in becoming involved with raising consciousness concerning the messages and services being crafted to serve Black gay men living and or affected by HIV and AIDS. A aggresive and developing schedule of events including launching a in-house support group model, plus participating in HIV Awareness programs and utilizing social media outlets as a medium to share their organizational information and future programming. The organization can be contacted via the LA Corp's office phone 379-8203, at or Strilite Incorporated, P.O. Box 242281 Little Rock, Arkansas, 72227 The group will be based at 401 North Maple, Suite A, North Little Rock, Arkansas 72214

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on LGBT Pride Month

At the heart of this administration is a core belief in equality. This belief means ensuring that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Americans have the same protections and opportunities as their family members, neighbors, friends, and colleagues. Among the many areas where we are working to ensure that fairness for LGBT individuals is health care.
All Americans, no less LGBT individuals, deserve the right to accessible, affordable, quality health care. Observing LGBT Pride Month in June spotlights our commitment to addressing the special health needs of LGBT Americans and reducing health disparities for them and members of other vulnerable communities.
Studies have shown that health disparities related to sexual orientation and gender identity are due partly to lower rates of health coverage. LGBT individuals have encountered discrimination in the health care system for decades, and many studies have shown that they are affected by chronic disease at a higher rate than other Americans.

The Affordable Care Act has already made significant progress toward ending some of the worst insurance company abuses and toward helping ensure that LGBT Americans have access to coverage when they need it most. For example, the Affordable Care Act ends lifetime dollar limits on benefits, allowing for long-term comprehensive treatment of chronic diseases.
In addition, the federal website,, designed to help all consumers find the health insurance best suited to their needs, makes it easy to locate health insurers that cover domestic partners.
The Affordable Care Act will give all Americans, including LGBT Americans, improved access to health coverage through an expanded, stronger Medicaid program and new affordable Insurance Exchanges, marketplaces for quality, affordable health insurance. And as of last fall, insurers can no longer deny coverage to children because of pre-existing health conditions – a protection that will extend to every American in 2014. Similarly, insurers will no longer be able to turn someone away just because he or she is lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. Additionally under the new law, many Americans, including LGBT individuals, can now get vital preventive services, such as mammograms, HIV testing, and other cancer screenings, with no co-pay or deductible.

The Department of Health and Human Services continues to address the specific health concerns of LGBT Americans, by working to incorporate data collection on LGBT populations into national health surveys and issuing rules requiring hospitals to allow same-sex partners the ability to visit each other in the hospital.

Our efforts haven’t stopped with health care. When confronted with the tragic suicides of LGBT teens around the country who had been bullied, this administration launched a historic effort to stop the bullying of LGBT children and youth in their homes, schools, and communities. We’ve also launched a new website called, a one-stop shop where kids, teens, parents, and educators can go online to learn about preventing and stopping bullying.

During Pride Month, we celebrate our accomplishments while focusing on the work still to be done. Our department is committed to improving the health and well-being of all Americans, including LGBT Americans, and we look forward to continuing this work during Pride Month and beyond.
For more information about how the Affordable Care Act is giving LGBT Americans more control over their health care, see and

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