The Black Leaders

Jim Clyburn,Congressman SC, Rev. DR. Waterman, Dee Bailey, and Brooklyn NY Congressman Hakeem Jeffries

Watchful Eye Salutes President Obama for Keeping
HIV/AIDS on the Health Agenda

Last night President Obama address the American public in what would be his final State of the Union address.  The address touched on a variety of topics including national security, education, hope for the future, and health care. 

During his delivery the President affirmed his commitment to improving the resources and reducing incidences of HIV infection across the nation. The Watchful Eye would like to salute President Obama for his ongoing efforts to make HIV/AIDS a key issue as HIV/AIDS must remain a part of the national health conversation should we hope to bring an end to its presence in our community.

Throughout both terms of his administration, the President has pushed for sensible legislation that reduces the barriers to care and services for those infected and affected by the epidemic.  His efforts have helped to raise awareness that the epidemic still exists in our communities and the importance of increasing access to care, optimizing health outcomes, and reducing HIV-related health disparities.

The Watchful Eye continues to fully support President Obama, as stated in the mission statement in his 37 step National HIV/AIDS Strategy where he states, “The United States will become a place where new HIV infections are rare, and when they do occur, every person, regardless of age, gender, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or socioeconomic circumstance will have unfettered access to high-quality, life-extending care, free from stigma and discrimination.”

We would also like to thank Congresswoman Yvette Clark for reminding the President during last night’s address that, “We love you in Brooklyn.  We hope that you will come visit us when you are a private citizen.”

As a community based organization, the Watchful Eye will continue to do all that we can and encourage members of the community to get tested and get involved in an effort to help reduce the incidence of HIV infection and AIDS mortality in our communities.

World AIDS Day 2015. Watchful Eye partners with Brooklyn Nets to commemorate World AIDS Day

In commemoration of World AIDS Day 2015, Tuesday, December 1st the Watchful Eye partnered with the Brooklyn Nets organization to raise HIV awareness by promoting testing and education during their game against the Phoenix Suns, which the Nets went on to win!

The Watchful Eye’s team was joined by community leaders including, Assemblyman Walter Mosely; Bishop Gerald Seabrooks, Pastor of Rehoboth Cathedral Church and NYPD Clergy Liaison; Wendy McClinton, President of the Black Vets for Social Justice; Patrick Pagan, Project Director from the NYC Dept. of Health and Mental Hygiene – New York Knows; Rev. Stacey Latimer, of Love Alive International Church, and chair of the NYC Faith in Action Coalition; the KAN Cobra Martial Arts Academy and Khari Edwards, Vice President of SUNY Downstate University Hospital Brookdale Hospital. 

Other notable organizations represented at the game included the Brooklyn Borough President’s office; Brooklyn Plaza Medical Center; Brooklyn Knows Project – Steering Committee; and the Caribbean Women’s Health Association.
During the game basketball fans received a message from the public announcement system that stated, “The Brooklyn Nets would like to commemorate World AIDS Day and remind you to Get Educated, Get Tested, and know your HIV status.”

In addition to invited elected officials and local leaders there were some well known celebrities and entertainers in attendance for the game, they included hip hop artist Rick Ross, boxing champion Floyd Mayweather, and actor/rapper/producer Will Smith, among others.

The Watchful Eye World AIDS Day partnership with the Brooklyn Nets represented the first time an NBA organization has publicly collaborated with a community based organization dedicated solely to saving lives through leadership mobilization, awareness programs, testing and education in the fight against HIV/AIDS. 

Divinah Bailey, who founded the Watchful Eye more than 5 years ago stated, “The Nets are Brooklyn’s very own basketball team.  We are excited about the work that can be accomplished in collaboration with the organization.  HIV education and awareness is key to changing the course of the epidemic in our community.  We look forward to working together to help change the course of the epidemic in our communities.”

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