Vaxxed

GLAAD Partners With Black Queer Content Creators to Push Education on Mpox

· Updated on March 23, 2023

You remember that TikTok from Heather Chelan (@hebontheweb) where she sings “the pandemic isn’t over, just because you’re over it”? In case you forgot, here it is.

@hebontheweb

idk who needs to hear this but some of y’all need to know the pandemic isn’t over. also wear a mask. #coronavirus #covid #covid19 #pandemic #original

♬ The pandemic isnt over just because youre over it – heather chelan

The same logic applies to Mpox (formerly known as Monkeypox) as well. The postule-producing illness made a comeback in 2022, since its 2003 debut in the United States. States with highly populated cities, like Illinois, California, and New York, were ransacked by Mpox outbreaks and definitely added more dread to 2022 – especially for queer folks. 

Mpox was disproportionately impacting the LGBTQ+ community, with emphasis on queer men. Health officials were monitoring the transmission of the illness and were noticing higher transmission rates amongst men who have sex with men. Unfortunately, Mpox also disproportionately impacts Black queer men as well, especially those with multiple sexual partners. 

In an effort to combat this and to further educate on Mpox, LGBTQ+ media advocacy organization GLAAD is turning to their #GLAADFactsandVax campaign for support. Their social campaign, led by DaShawn Usher, the director of GLAAD’s Communities of Color and Media department, along with associate director Julian J. Walker and junior associate Kayla Thompsonis geared towards engaging Black queer men to encourage safer practices surrounding sex and Mpox.

To bolster the campaign, GLAAD partnered with the following sex positive content creators in order to get the message out to communities most impacted by Mpox: 

 

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A post shared by Kenni Javon (@kennijavon)


“This campaign was personally important to me because I have many friends, myself, who are at risk of [Mpox],” said KVNG DAVID. “Any opportunity to be a part of spreading the word and resources, is one I am GLAAD to take!” 

The three content creators shared videos to their social media accounts in their own voice to promote the #GLAADFactsandVax campaign and encourage their followers to check out GLAAD’s resources, like their Mpox Fact Sheet.

“This campaign was important for me because I know that I have a voice and influence over my community and it allowed me to use that voice/influence for something positive,” said Kenni Javon. “My reasoning for joining was to spread the importance of the first and second vaccine because I knew a handful of people who stopped after the first dose of the vaccine.”

 

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A post shared by 🗣 Speak Life (@forever_mistah)

GLAAD has partnered with advocacy organizations in the past with campaigns #VoteWithPRIDE and The Visibility Project to promote LGBTQ+ voter engagement and LGBTQ+ media visibility. But this time, they’re putting Black queer men at the forefront of communicating the message in ways they know best to their community.

“The reason why I participated in GLAAD’s Facts and Vax campaign is because I think that the overall wellness of our community is of the utmost importance,” said Forever Mistah. “It’s always an honor to use my platform to share information that our community can not only learn from, but can utilize in their daily lives. Health is the real wealth.”

This partnership is expected to mobilize Black queer men to take action against Mpox, ensuring that they receive their first and second doses of the Mpox vaccine, sharing posts on social media about education around Mpox, and combating Mpox misinformation with friends, family, and loved ones. Black queer folks deserve safe spaces, the right to freely express their sexuality, and be able to take care of their health. None of it should be compromised and this campaign is a testament to that. 

 

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A post shared by KVNG DAVID (@kvngdavidsworld)

Interested in seeing all of the #GLAADFactsandVax campaign reels? Click on the hyperlinked names of each content creator in this article and learn more about them and education around Mpox.

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