A giant red AIDS ribbon was erected yesterday on Twin Peaks in San Francisco in order to mark the 30 year anniversary of the very first reported case of HIV/AIDS. The red ribbon was erected by over 100 volunteers through the San Francisco AIDS Foundation in order to raise awareness about the importance of the fight against AIDS.
From Neil Giuliano, CEO of San Francisco AIDS Foundation: “This ribbon is a bold reminder to the entire world that HIV/AIDS is still an issue that urgently needs our attention. We have made tremendous progress in the fight against the disease over the past 30 years, but our work is not done. We believe even one new infection is one too many, and we will continue to give people the information and services they need to remain healthy and take care of the people they love.”
There are roughly two new HIV cases reported each day in San Francisco. Over 56,000 people are infected every year nationwide. The only risk group for HIV/AIDS that is seeing an increase of newly reported cases is among gay and bisexual men throughout the nation. The San Francisco AIDS Foundation felt the red ribbon on Twin Peaks was important in order to reinforce its commitment to the community about improving health and to remind the population about the importance of HIV testing and prevention efforts.
San Francisco was the first city in the United States to experience and epidemic for AIDS cases. There are currently about 16,000 people living with HIV/AIDS in the city.
“San Francisco has always been a pioneer when it comes to HIV/AIDS. From the early days of the disease, the city responded with courage to save lives and change the course of the epidemic. Today the ribbon on Twin peaks is an extension of that legacy and sends an important message that San Francisco will always be a leader in the fight against HIV.” –Scott Wiener, San Francisco Supervisor.
The red ribbon erected on Twin Peaks was made from 25 tarps and measures in at 225 feet long and 165 feet wide. The ribbon can be seen throughout San Francisco as well as from parts of Marin County, the East Bay and South San Francisco.
“I am so proud to be part of this historic effort to raise awareness. This ribbon is a reminder that in San Francisco we take care of everyone in our community. We have always been a compassionate city, and that will never change.” –Volunteer Mike Shaw. He helped install the red AIDS ribbon Twin Peaks through the San Francisco AIDS Foundation.
For more information about the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, please visit sfaf.org