June 28, 2012

To the Editor:

I am disheartened to read the comments in this article about Michael Roberson and his role in the closing of People of Color in Crisis, but more importantly I am disappointed and disgusted to read some of the comments written by readers, many who have a lot to say, but do not have the courage to put their full name behind their comments (“Reliance on Government Dollars Threatens Black Gay HIV Efforts,” by Duncan Osborne, Jun. 20-Jul. 3).

Well, I have the courage to speak the truth. POCC was one of the premiere agencies in New York City and throughout the United States that served people of color infected and affected by HIV. The evidence shows in the amount of money that the organization was given by the federal government to provide HIV prevention and AIDS services to individuals in Brooklyn, but also evidenced in their level of activism, such as Pride in the City and the creation of the Black Gay Research Group. POCC under Gary English's leadership was committed to serving gay men and others affected by HIV. The organization had a longstanding history of excellent work and was instrumental in the development of the HIV evidence-based intervention Many Men, Many Voices.

Sheldon Applewhite



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