I attended the U.S. Conference on AIDS (USCA) in Orlando, Florida, in September. The organizers of the conference from NMAC said they chose Orlando as the 2018 site to honor those who died and those who continue to live in the aftermath of the 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting. While writing a feature story on this topic for TheBodyPRO, I decided it would be best to hear directly from four HIV advocates attending USCA about the importance of honoring Pulse and the impact of the attack on their community.
Charles Sanchez is an openly gay, openly poz writer/director/actor living in New York City. He has written for WritingRaw.com and HuffPost's Queer Voices. As a performer, musical director, and director, he has worked in venues ranging from Lincoln Center and off-Broadway to dinner theater in Arkansas. His award-winning musical comedy web series, Merce, is about an HIV-positive guy living in New York who isn't sad, sick, or dying.