While we mostly cover the continuing battles over immigration spreading through the southeast, another disease is also rampaging through the southeast. We believe it is frightening enough that people must speak out about it, and state officials in Alabama must pay attention to it!

AIDVu, a nonprofit mapping agency, has created an interactive map that graphically portrays the spread of  HIV/Aids. The data can be broken down into individual counties and, for Washington D.C. and New York, even zip codes.

For many, this geographical depiction of HIV presents a new way of looking at this epidemic, and it offers some surprises. Many associate the HIV/Aidss epidemic as something only found in large urban areas. However, there is a dark red corridor of infection that goes through the southeast.

In fact, the Southeast United States is the epicenter of the fastest growing HIV/Aids rates in the country. Misconceptions, such that HIV/Aids is found only in large cities, leads to a lack of preventive education and a lack of investment in medical infrastructure in rural communities. Often in rural communities the stigma attached to the disease makes people afraid to seek help or even talk about it. HIV/Aids in rural communities is compounded by poverty, poor education, and a lack of transportation to reach medical clinics. Therefore, Alabama’s poor and rural communities have become particularly vulnerable to the HIV/Aids epidemic.

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