National AIDS Policy Director Urges Collaboration on HIV/AIDS

Published: October 21, 2014

BU Today
Leslie Friday
Original Article:

Lena Lundgren felt like a “proud mama,” she said when introducing Douglas Brooks as the keynote speaker at last week’s Addiction Health Services Research Conference in Boston.

Last March, President Barack Obama appointed Brooks (SSW’99) director of the Office of National AIDS Policy (ONAP), which manages the US response to the AIDS epidemic. Prior to that, Brooks was a member of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS. And he spent 16 years at the Justice Resource Institute in Boston, where he rose from an intern to senior vice president for community, health, and public policy, serving a diverse population of people living with HIV/AIDS. Brooks is the first HIV-positive African American to lead the national office…..He cited some troubling statistics in the nation’s war on AIDS. There are currently 1.1 million people living with HIV in the United States, and new infections number 50,000 each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Roughly 64 percent of new infections occur among gay men, bisexuals, and men who have sex with men. While new infections have dropped by 20 percent among women and by 22 percent among injectable drug users, young gay black men have seen an alarming 48 percent increase.

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