Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Wednesday Outpost

Scholarship Applications Now Available
 Deadline for Submission: December 22, 2015

Through the generous support of AIDSWatch sponsors, we are excited to offer 25 travel and hotel scholarships and an additional 25 hotel-only scholarships for AIDSWatch 2015!

AIDSWatch, the nation's largest annual constituent-based national HIV/AIDS advocacy event, will bring hundreds of HIV advocates from around the country to Washington DC on April 13 and 14, to educate Congress on HIV/AIDS and related policy and funding priorities.

Information about AIDSWatch is available at www.aidsunited/org/AIDSWatch 2015. Event registration will open on January 15, 2015. 

download-arrowDownload the application.
Completed scholarship applications and supporting documentation are due to AIDSWatch organizers by December 22, 2014. Applicants can email any questions to

World AIDS Day Week Save the Date Announcement



High Impact Strategies to End HIV and Tobacco Use


HIV Prevention and Tobacco Prevention/Cessation among seniors-youth-community-faith based-LGBT-pregnant women-battered women-Latino community, recovering substance users & much more

Pulaski Technical College Grand Hall A & B

3000 Scenic Drive NLR Arkansas



Time: 8:00 - 4:30

Linder Conley, 501-897-5566 -  
Are you ready to be enrolled into the Affordable Care Act or Health Care Independence Act? Need information check out  Need personal assistance hit us up in our comment section.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

No Justice, No Peace Tuesday

It's the morning after the decision that was awaited with baited breathe and a under current of angst  that seem to hover across the country with uncertainty. Meanwhile after all the kabuki theater that was this decision there was a distinct "holla" and outcry that leaves much still unresolved and questionable. And so now we again wait to see what's next in the struggle in Ferguson, Missouri and the nation as a whole.

As President Obama evoked, the work must continue to identify positive outcomes while we all endure our system where the rule of law is suppose to be intact. Even as we are jarred by the pictures, coverage and sometime explosive verbiage from all sectors, ultimately this situation must "exhale" at some point to allow the air to clear as those seeking justice for their loved ones try to embrace the words of Dr. M.L King, "we've go some difficult days ahead..." No matter the rough days ahead, it is vitally important that we understand that if we don't deal with the "root" of the problem then the tree will continue to bear the same fruit.

With the holiday season kicking off this week with Thanksgiving, this situation echo's many themes that have been the kindling that have not ignited a sense of hopelessness and cynicism that will be used as a rallying cry as we assert the fact that  "Black lives do matter." The pain of this decision and other just like it require a push for judicial transparency, understanding the impact of societal determinants and put positive energy behind addressing community policing.

There will be all manner of protest and civil disobedience actions ranging from calls for store boycotts to continued street protest about "system's" in a country that for all appearances seems to be dysfunctional from Capitol Hill to City Hall.

History has proved that the unrest of young people fuels much of our social change and I believe that we must at all cost be prepared to demand some systematic changes before we fall over the tipping point. Let's continue to be hopeful and watchful as we move ahead during this turbulent time.

Learn About CDC's HIV Treatment Works Campaign

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has introduced HIV Treatment Works, a  campaign under the Act Against AIDS initiative encouraging people living with HIV to Get in care, Stay in care, and Live well. This campaign focuses on helping people living with HIV get into care, start taking HIV medications, remain in care, and adhere to treatment. 

Locally Mr. Cedric Gunn (pictured) was featured in the campaign as well as the latest issue of a Department of Health newsletter. Gunn is also a founding board member of the newly emerging LinQ for Life, Incorporated. He has stated that he plans to seek opportunities to educate in local schools.

To support the campaign the CDC encourages advocates and organizations to:

  • Forward this letter to your networks
  • Visit the campaign website and use campaign materials
  • Like the Act Against AIDS Facebook Page .
  • Follow @TalkHIV on Twitter and use the hashtag #HIVTreatmentWorks
  • Incorporate HIV Treatment Works into community events and educational presentations, underscoring the importance of care and treatment for people living with HIV.

New Kaiser Tool Calculates By Locality the Share of Potential ACA Federal Marketplace Enrollees That Signed Up for 2014 Plans

About 8 million people signed up for a health plan through the Affordable Care Act's insurance marketplaces by the end of the 2014 open enrollment period -- 28 percent of the potential market, according to Kaiser Family Foundation estimates.

As the ACA’s second open enrollment period gears up, a new tool from the Foundation delves into states to compare on a local level the number of people eligible for a marketplace plan with the share who signed up.

The resource, Mapping Marketplace Enrollment, calculates by local area the percentage of potential ACA marketplace enrollees that signed up for a health plan in a federally-based exchange by mid-April 2014. It also displays the number of potential enrollees and the number of plan signups in 100,000-resident statistical geographical areas associated with a zip code.

A Kaiser analysis of the data shows tremendous variation across the country. Signups totaled 60 percent or more as a share of the potential market in parts of Jackson, Miss., and Miami-Dade and Broward counties in Florida, among other areas. Enrollment was less than 10 percent of the potential market in parts of Texas, Iowa, Ohio, Indiana, Arizona, and Utah. Results varied significantly within states, as well: for example, the signup percentage for areas in Florida ranged from 12 to 89 percent.

The new tool uses data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey. Potential enrollees for the marketplaces are people who were uninsured or buying their own insurance before the ACA went into effect, who are not eligible for Medicaid or employer coverage, who are not in the coverage gap, and who are citizens or authorized immigrants.

National marketplace enrollment totaled 6.7 million as of Oct. 15, reflecting people who had not paid their premiums, attrition since the end of the open enrollment period, and new signups during special enrollment periods. The enrollment data by zip code released by the federal government includes only states served by federally-operated marketplaces and reflects plan signups as of the spring 2014 conclusion of the first ACA open enrollment period.

For more Health Reform resources, please visit

Monday, November 24, 2014

The Holiday Week Throwdown

DYSC’s 5th Annual Big Gay Variety Showbgvs 2014 logo

Friday, December 19, 2014
Unitarian Universalist Church – 1818 Reservoir Rd., Little Rock
Sliding scale admission: $8-15

Including Performances By:
Gender Illusionists
And So Many more

We will be honoring The Living Affected Corporation by donating 15% of all proceeds to the incredible HIV/AIDS advocacy/prevention work they do in the state.

The remainder of the proceeds will go to the purchase of a new TV, game system, and projector for the LMH Youth Center at CAR - Arkansas' only LGBTQ youth drop-in center.

There will be wine, beer, and concession available for a donation.

Tickets are on sale now!
Sliding scale from $8-$15
Please either email or call (501)244-9690 to purchase your tickets.

Facebook Event:

World AIDS Day Events Announced

Connie Roebuck, commonly known as the, "Condom Lady", will be hosting the city's   Annual World AIDS event, Monday, December 1st, 6-9pm, at the Forrest City Civic Center in Forrest City, AR, 

The event will feature area agencies displaying educational materials and literature concerning their mission's to decrease infections in Arkansas. 

Concurrent to the event, Roebuck also has been contracted as a Community Connector, as apart of a prevention outreach initiative designed to provided linkage to care opportunities, HIV/AIDS intervention and coordinated testing with the Arkansas Department of Health. Under the title, "The Roebuck Project," she will continue her long running efforts to reach out to smaller sized communities in her service area.

As a long term survivor, Roebuck has participated in numerous local health fairs, addressed students in delta region schools, has appeared on Delta Force radio and recently was a featured guest of AIDS United in Washington D.C. during their Capitol Hill briefing on women, violence and HIV. 

According to program information participant will eligible to win a $300.00 Grand Prize, $150.00 Second Prize, $50.00 Third Prize.  For youth (14-19 years old) in attendance they could win a pair of Dr Dre Beats (headphones) and other prizes. Free Food and beverages will also be available.
For more information, please contact Connie at:  870-270-3052 


Bush Mallon Institute Engages Southern Literary Project

Earlier this year, members of The Bush Mallon Institute under the leadership of Mr. Kevin Elders and Mr.Michael Ross sought to identity possible projects or initiative that would serve as additional
programming under their social justice scope of work. Consequently, they identified the " Reflections of A Shattered Mirror Project" in a collaborative agreement with former board member and program developer Cornelius Mabin for the STRILITE initiative based in Little Rock, Arkansas. 

Mabin stated, "As we conversed about possibly teaming up, I informed the BMI leadership that the group had decided to further expand it's scope of service by producing an anthology periodical comprising of personal lived experience compositions, social justice essay pieces, prose and other varying content." He continued, "since the BMI had a social justice angle, I felt that it was a natural fit to create a partnership that also could be extended unto the entire NABWMT membership."

He concluded, "the project title evokes a sense that we must shatter the mirrors of stereotypes and poor imagery that have fueled low esteem, a sense of hopeless and growing suicides among some young gay men in our service area."
During the recent national NABWMT conference, the project was also highlighted as part of an enlightenment session on how social media would play an instrumental element in the recruitment process and eventually in the marketing of the entire finished project which is now set for first quarter 2015 release. Content submissions are still being sought until December 31st at


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Wild Card Wednesday

The Relationship between LGBT Inclusion and Economic Development: An Analysis of Emerging Economies

By M.V. Lee Badgett, Sheila Nezhad, Kees Waaldijk, Yana van der Meulen Rodgers

graphWhen LGBT people are denied full participation in society because of their identities, their human rights are violated, and those violations of human rights are likely to have a harmful effect on a country’s level of economic development.  This study analyzes the impact of the treatment of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people on economic development in 39 emerging economies and other selected countries, and presents findings that demonstrate a link between LGBT rights and economic output. The findings suggest that LGBT equality should be part of economic development programs and policies.
- See more at:

World AIDS Day at Clinton Center

In commemoration of World AIDS Day, the Clinton Center will display the single largest traveling section of the AIDS Memorial Quilt.  Colorful and captivating, the panels were hand-sewn by friends and family members of AIDS victims and will blanket the lawn at the Clinton Center. This year's display will feature Arkansas-related quilt panels.
As the sun sets, the Center will host a Closing Candlelight Ceremony that will include remarks from local subject-matter experts who will lead a short discussion about the importance of continued HIV/AIDS awareness and action.  
The World AIDS Day observance highlights the ongoing work of the Clinton Foundation through the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI).  CHAI works to improve global health by strengthening health systems in developing countries and expanding access to life-saving treatment for HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, and diarrhea.   
AIDS quilt display
Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013
10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Closing Candlelight Ceremony
Sunday, Dec. 1, 2013
4:30 p.m. 
Watch this platform for more updates, videos, links and announcements of enrollment events in your area!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Trekking and Trending to the Next Level

Will Truvada help young black gay men avoid HIV?

by A. Florido ( International Center for Journalist)

A clinic in the historically African-American neighborhood of Baldwin Hills has launched a program to give patients easier access to Truvada, a once-a-day pill shown to drastically reduce the risk of
contracting HIV.
Doctors and staff at the Gleicher/Chen Health Center, run by the nonprofit AIDS Project Los Angeles, say the drug known as Truvada could become a key part of the effort to reduce new HIV infections among young black gay and bisexual men, who have the county’s highest rate of new infections.

Vallerie Wagner, the clinic’s chief operating officer, said it considers the drug "an important tool in the overall HIV prevention tool kit."

But despite its proven effectiveness at preventing the transmission of HIV, the drug has not been universally embraced. Indeed, since it was approved by the FDA as a preventive pill more than two years ago, Truvada has been slow to catch on among doctors and patients. Some advocates are concerned that the drug could actually put users at greater risk, because they might use it incorrectly or because it could encourage more unprotected sex.

The clinic has rolled its program out in a way meant to address these concerns, though its doctors say they recognize the challenges they’ll face in ensuring their patients use the pill safely.
Truvada works by maintaining a reservoir of the drug in the body so that someone who is exposed to HIV can quickly fight it off before it establishes itself in the system. The strategy is known as pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, and has been shown to be more than 90 percent effective.
But the concerns stem from the fact that taking the pill daily is seen as critical, at the same time that it is intended for people at high risk for HIV, many of whom may be less likely to adhere to the strict regimen.

Young black gay men, for example, have the highest rate of HIV. About one-third of black gay men
in L.A. County are estimated to have the virus. They are also at highest risk for infection, and yet are least likely to get tested for the virus, or to get into or remain in treatment after contracting it.
That reality raises serious questions as to whether many of these men will adhere to Truvada’s daily regimen, said Greg Wilson, who provides support to young black gay men at the nonprofit Reach L.A. Many of his clients have troubled backgrounds and are low income, and some are homeless.
"Going from that, to saying, 'OK, now starting today every single day at the same time if possible, you take this one pill?' And expect them to not mess up? That’s a level of responsibility that they have not ever had to deal with," Wilson said.

This is compounded by the fact that some of his clients on Truvada have said they’re less likely to use condoms. Wilson said they’ve been lulled into a false sense of security because they see the pill as a magic bullet as opposed to a backup plan. He wants Truvada to come with lots of education about its safe use.

These concerns have also led the Los Angeles-based AIDS Healthcare Foundation, the nation’s largest HIV treatment provider, to oppose Truvada.

"The CDC indications say you should use Truvada with condoms, but in real life that's not what's happening," said Michael Weinstein, the foundation's president.

This lack of knowledge about Truvada is something that Dr. Christian Nakayama, the APLA clinic’s HIV specialist, has seen himself.

"Most people will come in saying something along the lines of, I heard there’s a pill I can take to not get HIV," Takayama said. "Well, yes. But it’s not that simple." ( access the entire item at )
Tailgate with HRC Arkansas

HRC Arkansas has hit the ground running and will have its face in the place as the University of Arkansas takes on Ole’ Miss. Join us on Saturday, November 22 on the campus of the University of Arkansas at the NCAA Champions Gazebo in the Gardens as we "Call the Hogs" and share stories and hot dogs to celebrate each other and prepare for a great game!
HRC's presence at the game will continue to raise awareness about the organization's presence in the state and educate the community about the human and material resources on hand to help advance the cause of equality across Arkansas. Tailgate and Game Time will be announced soon. Make sure and follow us on
Facebook for more details and times.
The BYB Shout out Spotlight
This weeks "Bad Young Brother" is none other than J'ahmad Kelly who is rapidly crafting his "Internet rising star," using his You Tube channel " The Gaze" and Facebook page to engage and entice viewers to watch.  In our "blink" society, Kelly's unique twist and often times side splitting take on the days news cycle or either what's trending culturally, can be quite entertaining. His online show postings are well done with good lighting and sound. It also appears that he is not only having fun doing the shots but has put some considerable thought into presentation and marketing his brand to the Generation X or Y set. 
Among his latest send ups or mash up is a great piece on a recent COGIC Convocation where a young man is "delivered" from his homosexuality. I need not say more, because Mr. Kelly's video rebuttal speaks volumes and so much more than I even want to put into words. COP 24/7 is posting this piece because it became somewhat of a sensation being viewed some 3,795 times and counting. We could certainly use some of that type of traffic noise around here.  

Kelly is based in Pine Bluff, Arkansas and appears to want to be a man of mystery and aloofness. On a side note, COP 24/7 is proud to see eager young folks taking to new media to message their voices and perceptions about the world around them. We encourage it and will highlight others that are nominated or their work calls for attention.

All we can say is, if you want "fame," you better be ready for everybody to be all up in your business and more.

In the meantime, Ladies and Gents and all who haven't decided, J'ahmad Kelly is our BYB for the week. Check out his video below and subscribe to his You Tube channel.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Scaling Up and OUT at COP 24/7

Whew! What can we say at COP 24/7 other than  it's on as we continue to connect this platform to all of the projects that we are involved in making happen. It can be quite daunting and challenging to make sure that all platforms are popping with fresh content or activity to keep us ranking on the search engines. Talking about fastening your seat belts! It's been that and so much more with research, links, video feeds and maybe even a kitchen sink or two. Who knows where this is all going, but no matter, we are in it to win it! Come follow us here and "like" our Facebook page ( ). Don't forget that you can support us in our Rainbow Circle of Friends initiative and feel free to give us your feed back and come back here at COP 24/7! Let's keep this moving...!!

LINQ For Life Takes Flight

As World AIDS Day, December 1 rapidly approaches to recognize those who were lost to the disease, this year's theme, "Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS Free Generation," is being met with the next wave of intervention and prevention concepts across Arkansas.

Last week this forum announced the emergence of the Community Connectors initiative funded through the Arkansas Department of Health's Hep C/ HIV/ STI Section dedicated to engaging individual contractors to increase linkage to care awareness and now we can add  LINQ For Life which aims to address educate, coordinate, provide aid and relief to eradicate HIV/AIDS, STDs, and other health disparities in marginalized communities.

The brainchild of Mr. Lee Brown, the entity was designed to continue to fill service gaps, peer to peer interaction and move to readdress issues around HIV and AIDS that continue to exist while responding from a new approach.  Brown stated, " All of this has been in the planning stages and has move swiftly as I saw that there was still an unmet need." He continued, " since our initial planning, we've already achieved necessary official state documents and now awaiting our IRS 501 C 3 designation which we hope to secure by the end of the year." 

According to Brown, the namesake was chosen as a marketing brand to support the vision and mission of the organization to "be a link," to life affirming and changing elements that will be harnessed in our efforts to mentor those living with chronic health dilemmas in marginalized communities.

Brown also won a Community Connector's contract utilizing his proposal to increase outreach among fraternity organization and on college campuses. Currently he is a member of Phi Beta Sigma and he cited that numerous fraternal and sororities have health initiative including funding streams to support HIV and AIDS programming. "Since many in my networks are college bound or finishing up their education, I felt that this was a natural place for me to offer my services."

LinQ For Life, has deployed on social media with a website under construction and additional planning for future events in its targeted service areas of Saline, Pulaski, Garland, Lonoke and some Southeast counties of the state.   

Transgender Day of Remembrance

On Nov. 20, thousands in this country and around the world will hold vigils honoring the annual
Trans Day of Remembrance, where the lives of transsexual and transgender people who lost their lives to hate-based violence will be acknowledged, with the high majority of victims on the list being Black and Latina women.

The plight of transgender individuals loosing their lives or experiencing other disturbing violence against them also resonates in Arkansas, where many cases have gone unresolved and simply forgotten.

In observance of Transgender Day of Remembrance, ArTEC (Arkansas Transgender Equality Coalition) will sponsor an activity, Wednesday, 5:30 pm at Philander Smith College. The event will feature remarks from Little Rock Police Chief Kenton Buckner, reading of the Names and Lived Experiences of Transgender Persons, and a dedication of Memorial Wreath.

The Transgender Day of Remembrance was set aside to memorialize those who were killed due to anti-transgender hatred or prejudice. The event is held in November to honor Rita Hester, whose murder on November 28th, 1998 kicked off the “Remembering Our Dead” web project and a San Francisco candlelight vigil in 1999. Rita Hester’s murder — like most anti-transgender murder cases — has yet to be solved.

Created in 2007 by Gwendolyn A. Smith, The Transgender Day of Remembrance serves several purposes. It raises public awareness of hate crimes against transgender people, an action that current media doesn’t perform. Day of Remembrance publicly mourns and honors the lives of our brothers and sisters who might otherwise be forgotten.

Through the vigil, we express love and respect for our people in the face of national indifference and hatred. Day of Remembrance reminds non-transgender people that we are their sons, daughters, parents, friends and lovers. Day of Remembrance gives our allies a chance to step forward with us and stand in vigil, memorializing those of us who’ve died by anti-transgender violence.

 For questions, please contact Andrea Zekis at or 501-392-4276.

Teach for America – Open Microphone Reception featuring Tim’m West and C.C. Carter
Saturday, November 22, 2014
Boswell Mourot Fine Art Gallery – 5815 Kavanaugh Blvd., Little Rock, 72207

Join Teach for America and community for an evening reception and open mic night. Featuring the talents of Tim’m West and C.C. Carter.

Teach for America will be in Little Rock from Saturday, November 22 through Sunday, November 23 for their Deep South LGBTQ Education Summit. 


Monday, November 10, 2014

New Monday Out Post

What can we say? It's another week of COP 24/7 as we continue our efforts to consolidate and connect our various interest and work through this platform and other associated sites. Its a big job to produce daily content but we are doing our best to engage content aggregators to assist with keeping
this blog on the cutting edge and beyond of what's really going on. As a refresher, COP 24/7 is also partnered with The READ, a terra firma publication that also has a social media presence and our latest out growth with leveraging Arkansas RAPPS, a new concept emerging from a local health department initiative entitled Community Connectors. Arkansas RAPPS is an acronym for "Reaching, Affirming, Positive, Progressive, Systems," which will serve as an vehicle to continue to address issues and challenges in the MSM ( Men who have sex with Men) community. There will be a separate posting about this concept in a Thursday posting as well as expanded coverage about the entire Community Connectors initiative in the next issue of The READ. In the meantime, COP 24/7 will continue to re-tool, update our format and scale up our abilities to act as a "hub" in our spoke and wheel movement to enhance our ability to be an information leader. Come watch us grow into our prime as Arkansas' foremost online communicator! Keep it locked and loaded....!!

Community Advisory Board Speaks

The local Community Advisory Board which comprises of stakeholders, consumers, PLWHA and advocates host a monthly teleconference to share informational updates, discuss challenges and barriers and offer mutual support to participants. The next call is November 13, using the number 1-866-217-3840, access code: 9368160#. Interested parties are encourage to participate and share their views.

TRMS On the Job
I don't know if you've seen or heard Rachel Maddow on her nightly news show yet, but I am highly suggesting that you take look.

The Rachel Maddow Show,  is spicy,  tough, thought provoking and sometimes shoots from the hip with a take no prisoner style. Plus this gal is just plain ole fun as she takes on the daily news cycle with humor and gusto.She's also a persona that can sell out a venue as she proved a couple a years ago here in Little Rock. I think its a high time for another visit.
Maddow's show has spotlighted American connections with a then proposed Uganda law to legally dispose of homosexuals by hanging those who are seen as serial offenders or HIV infected involved in same-sex acts. She's called out "bull puckey," items ranging from politico's who put their foot's in their mouths to searing reporting about Americas dive into the Iraq war theater plus penned "Drift" a New York Times best selling book that argues that we've drifted away from America's original ideals and become a nation weirdly at peace with perpetual war. 

Most of her interviews are riveting and expose the lunacy of some foreign governments and their internal policies. Not to mention the "long arms" of American officials whom have either visited these countries in some favorable status or have other religious connections such as the nebulous entity, The Family that has been the subject of news reports swirling around it's Capitol Hill players.

As I recall, Ms Maddow often reports news items that are not subjects being approached on mainstream network newscast or above the fold in newspapers. Nevertheless, Maddow is not deterred in calling anyone out and asking for their explanation on almost any subject. One good thing about Dr. Maddow is that she's never wavered from mentioning her girlfriend on air or making it crystal clear that she's and out and proud Lesbian. Rock on Dr. Maddow.

The 2015 National African American MSM Leadership Conference on HIV/AIDS and Other Health Disparities Closes November 30th!!!

The NAESM staff,  planning committee and participating sponsors to date: ViiV Healthcare, Edge Media Network, The HIV Prevention Trials Network (HPTN), Gilead Sciences, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, amfAR and The UCLA H3/The Black Gay Research Group (BGRG) are gearing up to present the 12th installment of the National African American MSM Leadership Conference on HIV/AIDS and other Health Disparities which is scheduled to take place during the MLK weekend January 15-18, 2015 at the Renaissance Concourse Atlanta Airport Hotel located at One Hartsfield Centre Parkway Atlanta, GA 30354.
This conference will coincide with the H3/BGRG Summit scheduled to take place January 14, 2015. For more information on the conference or to register, submit an abstract or apply for a scholarship please visit the NAESM Inc. website at

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Mid Term Mid Week Thump

The  people have spoken and I hope they know what they are saying.
Last evenings election night
mayhem that resulting in tilting the Congressional legislative balance in favor of Republicans as well as many state houses, may have consequences that are yet unrealized.

As a Democratic Republic, it is our belief in the "one man or woman vote," to determine who will represent the overall electorate. Despite record turn out during early voting and otherwise, our system of sending folks to office worked again.

Although there were some small hiccups and long lines at some polling places, the choices have been made that all of us now must live with while hopefully holding these individuals accountable for this latest multi million dollar slug fest for power.

 Let us not forget all the talk about "taking our country back," from Tom Cotton and his quip about "our values as a free people in Arkansas." As the messiness of the election wound up, I could not overlook Governor elect Asa Hutchinson who ran ads in the Black community that he was a man all about " marriage was for one man and one women."

Amidst it all, there are significant issues such as tax reform, illegal immigration, energy policies and the countries infrastructure which should be front and center nationally. While locally it is imperative that our Health Care Independence Act  continues in lieu of ongoing HIV infections, prison overcrowding and jail bed space, educational outcomes and other social determinants should be on the legislative plate come 2015.

The polls have closed. The seemingly endless vicious ads have ceased. And the victor speeches have come and gone. So with all that said and done, let's see what awaits us as the political wheels grind on. We'll keep the light on....

PFLAG November Meet UP

The monthly meeting of the local chapter of  Parents and Friends of Lesbian and Gays will take place, November 7, inside the First Presbyterian Church, 800 Scott Street in downtown Little
Rock at 6:30pm.

Organizer Carla Coley announced that the main topic of the meeting will center around what good has recently happened in the LGBTQ movement and she encourages participants to submit  a story or article to share. Also she states that the tone of the meeting will be to accent  positive aspects.  Coley states that she is seeking individual who would like to step up and play a bigger role as well as adding input in leading the PFLAG meetings. Check out their Facebook page for more contact information.

Arkansas HPG Signs On

The Arkansas HIV Planning Group signed on to a support letter forged by The AIDS Budget and Appropriations Coalition (ABAC) which urges member of the appropriations committee to prioritize domestic HIV/AIDS funding in the fiscal year 2015 budget.

Currently the Congress has been authorizing supplemental and stop gap funding measures as they haggle over the many tenants of the entire budget appropriation. This issue has been a topic of discussion at recent AHPG meetings concerning how the Arkansas Department of Health's Hepatitis C, HIV Section will be able to adequately budget for the next round of prevention funding in the state. Section Chief Ralph Wilmoth, has stated that the section is continuously monitoring the state of affairs around what's happening in D.C. "All our subsequent planning, is related to budget shortfalls or how we may need to reallocated our resources," he concludes.

AHPG Co-Chair, C. Mabin said, " I felt it imperative that AHPG sign on this letter as a signal that only are we in lock step with ABAC but also duly concerned with this budgetary dilemma. This could directly affect how we can effectively use federal dollars in our mission to decrease infections in Arkansas."

The letter emphasizes that failure to continue to our nations investment in a health care safety-net and to support prevention, care and treatment and research programs will result in significant increases in HIV infections. Plus the document highlights that this could also result in higher hospital and emergency room cost and diminish hope for a cure and or vaccine to eradicate HIV disease. The letter outlined the following funding request to fully fund the Ryan White Program:

Part A: $656 million

Part B (Care): $415 million

Part B (ADAP): $900 million
Part C: $215 million

Part D: $75 million

Part F/AETC: $34 million

Part F/Dental: $13 million

Part F/SPNS: $25 million
Pick up the current copy of The READ at local venues and businesses. If you are interested in celebrating your firm, businesses, brand or service, then hit us up at for advertising information. Content submission deadline is November 10. Come join us at The READ!

Don't forget to "Like" us on our Facebook page at

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Election Day Razzle Dazzle

Getting Ur Vote On!

The day has arrived in which citizens can take their concerns to the polls! Election Cycle 2014 goes into overdrive as early voting ceased and the main event rolls today. There are many Apps and that are ready to give you polling info or other valuable tools to make sure that you have a successful day at the ballot box.

 Of course you've most likely been inundated as everyone else has with the tidal wave of political ads and mail out pieces that seem to have no end.
websites such as

To my surprise I even got a "robo" call from the Human Rights Campaign urging my support for area candidates. With that I thought, even though we have other "politically driven" entities, none apparently felt inclined to join the fray of informing the LGBTQ electorate.

In the meantime, politically engaged Mr. Trey Weir will be hosting a Election Night Watch party at TRAX's 415 Main Street in Argenta. According to his FB event page, its a potluck, pep rally, and people watching all rolled into one! It steps off at 6pm.

Across town, Drew Pritt and Barry Jefferson are hosting another watch event for candidate Regina Stewart Hampton who is running for State Auditor. This jumps at 8:30 P.M. at the DOUBLETREE HOTEL- WEST ROOM ( downtown Little Rock)  These are just a couple of events among the numerous candidates who are hosting election watch parties across the city awaiting those pesky returns of either victory or defeat.
The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) is Presenting Sponsor of AIDSWatch 2015

ETAF Ambassador/Actress Kate Burton (of TV’s Scandal) Announces Sponsorship Honoring Elizabeth Taylor’s Legacy & Empowering the Next Generation of HIV/AIDS Advocates

AIDSWatch organizers are thrilled to announce The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) as Presenting Sponsor for the two-day AIDSWatch 2015 program. It is the U.S.’ largest constituent-based HIV advocacy event, bringing together hundreds of HIV advocates to Washington, D.C. from all around the country to educate members of Congress about the legislative priorities and resources needed to help bring an end to this epidemic.
In tribute to Elizabeth Taylor’s legacy as an activist in the fight against HIV/AIDS, ETAF will help fund the event, which is organized by the Treatment Access Expansion Project (TAEP), AIDS United and the US People Living with HIV Caucus.
AIDSWatch 2015 will take place April 13-14. Applications for travel scholarships and registration was to open Nov. 1st, 2014, however this has been delayed. COP 24/7 will monitor the site and when the links become active, they can be accessed at

"My step-mother, Elizabeth Taylor, often traveled to Washington, D.C. to advocate for HIV/AIDS causes over the last 25 years of her life. By testifying at Congressional hearings, and meeting with presidents, senators, and state and local representatives, she was instrumental in influencing policy that both protected and benefited people suffering from this deadly disease," said ETAF Ambassador, Kate Burton, who is also an actress and stars on ABC’s hit political drama, Scandal. “ETAF is very proud to be the Presenting Sponsor of AIDSWatch 2015, an event which resonates with the same compassion for helping others that she showed during her time on Capitol Hill.”

ABOUT AIDSWATCH 2015 – With new advances in treatment, improved access to care through health reform and new prevention technology that includes Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), huge strides have been made in getting to the end of AIDS. However, success in this battle will depend on key legislative efforts that include on-going support and modernization of the Ryan White Care Act, removing the ban on use of federal funds for syringe exchange programs, ensuring funding and support for comprehensive sexual health education, and addressing outdated HIV-criminalization laws across the United States.

AIDSWatch provides participants with current knowledge on the state of HIV/AIDS research, prevention, treatment, and important policy developments. Participants are also trained in effective advocacy skills; and are coached on how best to share this information with policymakers and their community. After training, participants meet Members of Congress to share their personal stories about the impact of current policies in their community, highlight the importance of HIV as an issue to their constituents, and present a face to the issue.
The BYB Shout Out Spotlight
COP 24/7 is always seeking ways to connect, grow and empower those who read our platform but also always on the hunt for positive folks making a difference in the community or for others. With that said, this platform will be launching our "Bad Young Brother" shout out to recognize young men
who are taking the "lemons that life" may have given them and now are having some lemonade success. Today's inaugural BYB Shout Out goes to Mr. George Mays, owner and operator of Little Rock T's and  his future branded clothing line of DKG which stands for "Design Kode by George."
Mr.Mays is a 2007 graduate of Central High School, served in the armed services, attends a local church and is a doting father to his daughter. George states that he envisioned that his emerging business would be a vehicle to not only serve his creative outlet, but also assist with supporting community based or faith based organization with their specific missions.
He has a passion for programs concerning youth, since he has both lived and seen the impact that having an unstable home life can have on a person. Although his business is home based at this time, he is working diligently to increase his client base, upgrade equipment and identify new prospects to utilize his craft of offering not only custom on-demand T-'s, but also a host of other marketing materials ranging from business cards to fliers. He's also interested in seeking angel investors who might want to get in on the ground floor of his developing business plan which he has dubbed his "Vision Book."
As he continues to realize his dream, he cites that  his passion to be successful derives from his goal to create a family life for his daughter and a sense of peace for himself. One of his favorite catch phrases is "All Ready," which he believes he is just that. All ready for future success and making a difference in his life and community. If you need some custom made T-Shirts designed with a fast turn around for a reasonable price. Call or Text George at 501.952-8483 or hit him up of Facebook!
If you've got a "BYB" that needs a shout out, then by all means feel free to nominate them and share there story here at COP 24/7! Everybody needs some encouragement and empowerment!

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Monday, November 03, 2014

Welcome to the COP 24/7 Reboot 2.0

So have you missed us? Did you wonder what the heck is going on? Perhaps you had thoughts that there was something else brewing for Arkansas' longest running daily blog? Well you would be on the right track as we have been experimenting with all manner of how this platform needs to continue. We checked analytical information. Looked under the hood to see if content was relevant and made some type of connection. For the most part, yes.

There was a review of style, links, and other assorted ancillary items that come with producing this platform. Through it all, what was decided was that COP 24/7 has done a hell of job as the "little blog" that has posted consistently over the last ten years, topping out at over 1100 post to date. That translates into to about 150,000 words on topics ranging from female circumcision to addressing the plight of fatherless young men especially gay men of color who are profoundly impacted by this phenomenon.

It's all in this time capsule of "what was I thinking," over the last decade and a snapshot of what was really going on in the world. So what' new you ask, well we have retooled, decided to have some rotating backdrops, staying with our forthright coverage while continuing our dedicated mission to address HIV and AIDS in Arkansas. This platform supports the new Community Connector initiative that seeks to serve as another direct level of prevention and intervention in the MSM community. 

COP 24/7 believes that this first of its kind approach in Arkansas will be instrumental in forging the pathway of the "next generation" of intervention engagement to assist with linkage to care, return to care and identifying other challenges and barriers that fuel additional HIV infections. COP 24/7 and our media partner The READ will be highlighting the new contractors as well as, specifics to their proposed work in their respective communities. Well, here we go again...hoping to bring you more of what you are looking for!

Turn Out To VOTE

As Early voting rolls to a close today, don't forget that although I'm sure that you have had with all the political advertising that seems to drone on like no tomorrow, its is all about tomorrow as everyone must vote. There's just no if, and or but about it. Voting is the great equalizer that gives the nations citizens a "say" in who get's elected at the ballot box and whether these folks will make you the lunch in the box. No matter your political affiliation or if you believe that this cycle is your last chance to express your attitude about the current administration, what really is at stake is who will be at the policy table after the election fall out. 
 Locally we've got numerous interesting campaigns that warrant everyone's attention. Since it seems that despite the closeness of some contest, COP 24/7 finds it interesting that there was no forum set up to engage these candidates specifically to the state's LGBTQ community. Surely one would think that maybe any of the local community based groups would have been on this one especially in lieu of the marriage equality decision sitting in limbo and many of these candidates have openly advertise their "gun touting, Obama hating, and Christian values all the while espousing rhetoric of how they will represent all Arkansans. Really!?
For the record, Human Rights Campaign did a early AM e-blast citing their endorsement of embattled Sen. Mark Pryor, whom they state, "has voted for critical pro-equality legislation, including the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." That may be so, but I don't recall Pryor making that case in any direct information or perhaps buying some advertising in the local LGBTQ newspaper to affirm his need for the communities votes. For that matter the only candidate to do so was City Director candidate, Kathy Webb.
Although this forum has been taken to task about calling out folks, but excuse me, if you don't say nothing, nothing most likely won't get done as is the case almost 90 percent of time in these parts. COP 24/7 has emphasized the importance of the LGBTQ community working the "systems" that are suppose to be there in our best interest. So when we get this is up for thoughts. But for now, its all about "Turn Out to Vote." Check out
Preparing for 2015 Open Enrollment
The Health Connector Division (AHCD) of the Arkansas Insurance Department and Arkansas Navigator Coalition will be conducting informative meetings to all Agents/brokers, Navigators, IPA Guides and CACs throughout the seven rating areas of Arkansas to prepare and share ideas for the upcoming 2015 open enrollment period. COP 24/7 will update with specific organizations as they are confirmed that will be available locally to assist those seeking enrollment or information.
Topics will include 2015 plans & rates for FFM & Private Option (PO), Assister licensing and relicensing issues, Marketplace plans and PO plans enrollment/renewal, consent forms, SHOP updates, Arkansas Health Insurance Marketplace progress and other issues. 
The presenters will be Bruce Donaldson from AHCD and Jonathan Sheets & David Armistead Wright from Arkansas Navigators Coalition.  The dates, locations are below.  All times are from 9am-12pm
11/5/14- Conway Regional Health Systems
2302 College Avenue
Conway, AR 72034
Hospital Auditorium
11/6/14- Southern Arkansas University
100 E University Street
Magnolia, AR 71753
Reynolds Center Grand Hall A and B
11/10/14- St. Bernard’s Healthcare
225 East Jackson Street
Jonesboro, AR 72401
Main Auditorium
11/11/14- North Arkansas College
1515 Pioneer Drive
Harrison, AR 72601
Durand B
11/12/14- Marvin L Vinson Multi Purpose Building
1116 W Oakland Street
Clarksville, AR 72830
Small Exhibit Room
11/13/14- Jefferson Regional Hospital
1600 W 40th Avenue
Pine Bluff, AR 71603
Class Rooms J & R
11/14/14- Arlington Hotel
239 Central Avenue
Hot Springs, AR 71901
Conference Room B


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