Baptist Conference Addresses HIV/AIDS in Black Community

Fear, religious beliefs and cultural differences are among the reasons why blacks do not get tested for HIV, participants of the National Baptist Convention USA's annual Congress of Christian Education conference being held in Detroit, said on Monday, the Detroit Free Press reports. As part of the five-day conference, religious leaders discussed ways to address the high rates of HIV and AIDS among the black community. Participants also said that concerns of racism by medical professionals may be a reason why blacks do not get tested. Simone Phillips of the St. Louis chapter of the American Red Cross said, "A lot of people are leery" in the black community and "we [need] to get rid of the stigma" surrounding HIV/AIDS (Warikoo, Detroit Free Press, 6/23).

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