Chaz Howard - Youth and HIV

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Chaz Howard is 19 years old and resides in Des Moines, Iowa. Howard was diagnosed fewer than nine months ago, yet he has made the choice to be completely transparent with regards to his HIV-positive status -- even with friends, family, fellow students and some acquaintances.

Chaz has found care and support that was unexpected and he speaks from the perspective of a newly-diagnosed youth of a mixed ethnicity in a state where a harsh HIV criminalization law exists. Howard is a member/volunteer of Positive Iowans Taking Charge (PITCH), an emotional and social support group run by HIV+ for HIV+.

Chaz also volunteers with an Iowa-based non-profit organization titled Community HIV/Hepatitis Advocates of Iowa Network (CHAIN); CHAIN is spearheading the effort in Iowa to repeal or "modernize" Iowa's Draconian HIV-specific criminalization statute.

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