December 3, 2013 at 3:00 pm EDT | by Staff reports
Calif. studies effects of drugs in spread of HIV
Long Beach, California, gay news, Washington Blade, ADAM

Long Beach, Calif. (Photo by D. Ramey Logan; courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

LONG BEACH, Calif. — A new program called the ADAM Project (Alcohol and Drug Advocacy for Men) offers substance abuse counseling and HIV prevention outreach to Latino and black gay and bi men ages 18-29, the Long Beach Press Telegram reports.

It’s based at the city’s Gay and Lesbian Center and is one of several nonprofit resources there that assist people who are HIV positive and work to prevent future infections.

In Long Beach, about 90 percent of HIV and AIDS cases are in men who have had sex with other men, 67 percent are people under the age of 30 and 73 percent are Latino or black, according to 2011 Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services data, the most recent year for which numbers are available, the article noted.

In a survey of 400 gay Latino and black men in Long Beach, ADAM Project workers found about 70 percent of the men said they had used illegal drugs in the past 30 days and more than 60 percent said they had unprotected sex with a man, John Kirby, director of development at Behavior Health Services (which partners with the Center in the effort), told the Telegram. He wrote the proposal that led to a five-year, $2.5 million federal grant that funds the project.

For 2011, 157 new HIV infections and 46 AIDS diagnoses were reported in Long Beach, compared with 127 new HIV infections and 46 AIDS diagnoses in 2010, the Telegram reports.

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