People of Color in Crisis, Inc. (POCC) hosts the annual Pride in the City celebration to build and affirm the Black Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community in New York City by providing opportunities for cultural celebration, networking, education and awareness, and access to health services while increasing members' connectivity to the community and its resources.
The BlackOut Arts Series
Friday - August 5th
5-11p at the Brooklyn Marriott
333 Adams Street
Pride in the City offers quick results
Annual event plans no wait for HIV status
By JAMES WITHERS
Friday, July 29, 2005
Don't put the Pride wear away yet because there are a few more days left to celebrate and to get some serious work done in terms of politics and health. People of Color in Crisis is sponsoring its fourth annual Pride in the City.
Gary English, executive director of the Brooklyn-based health organization, has seen Pride in the City turn into a mid-summer event people have come to expect.
"The numbers have skyrocketed over the years," English said. "Our first year we got 1,200 and each year it has gotten better. The community expects us to do this event every year and sees it as a staple."
English already knows how he will measure PIC as a success.
"Our goal is to get a minimum of 500 men tested for HIV and AIDS," English said.
HIV testing, especially in the black gay male community, has become a national priority. Recently the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention called "the HIV/Aids epidemic a health crisis for African Americans." Nationwide in 2003, of the estimated 32,000 new HIV/AIDS diagnoses, half were black. The numbers in New York City mirror the country. In 2003, 50 percent of the city's HIV diagnoses were in the black community. New York figures mirror the nation in another troubling way: 56 percent of blacks who learned they had HIV also discovered they had AIDS. These numbers make it an imperative for any event that is about gay men of color to offer free and easy HIV testing. Unlike previous PICs, this year the plan is for people to learn their HIV status immediately after they are tested.
It would be wrong to simply see the four days as pure seriousness. It's summer, and Pride in the City is also meant to be fun. Singer Vivan Green is the artist opening the festivities on Aug. 4. On Aug. 6, at Commodore Barry Park Deborah Cox is scheduled to perform. A black gay research summit is scheduled from Aug. 3 to Aug. 5 where scholars can exchange information about research on black gay men.
"We are fairly young, but I want this to turn into an entity. We need to turn Pride in the City into an institution."
Black Pride Blooms This Weekend
People of Color in Crisis hosts celebrations to spotlight HIV prevention agenda
By NICHOLAS BOSTON
This year's Pride Month, in June, is fast becoming a distant memory for most New Yorkers, but another public festival celebrating gay and lesbian life is on the horizon.
Only this time, the accent is more on "life" than on anything else.
From August 5 to 8, People of Color in Crisis (POCC), a 15-year-old organization providing HIV/AIDS prevention and support services to the African American community in New York, hosts its third annual Pride in the City weekend. The goal of the event, which features a picnic in Brooklyn's Fort Greene Park, a beach party at Jacob Riis Beach at Far Rockaway, and performances by Soul and House music singers like Kelly Price, is to contact, test and counsel as many black, gay and bisexual men as possible on HIV/AIDS prevention.
The event is sponsored by a number of federal, state and non-profit health agencies, including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the New York State Department of Health, and Gay Men's Health Crisis.
For POCC, the paradigm shift came in the form of the first Pride in the City in 2002.
At last year's event, more than 100 people were tested for HIV, one third of whom turned out to be positive, said English. This year, POCC organizers have set a goal of testing 300 attendees.
6 August 2004, New York Times, Section E, part 2, pg. 36:
PRIDE IN THE CITY ANNUAL FAMILY DAY PICNIC, Fort Greene Park, DeKalb and Myrtle Avenues, Brooklyn. With entertainment, vendors and health exhibits. Tomorrow at noon. Sponsored by People of Color in Crisis. Information: (718) 230-0770.