Features and Interviews

CAS downsizes by two to cope with surprise financial losses; a whistleblower among those let go

published: January, 13, 2016 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // Activism, Current Affairs, Features and Interviews, Bob Leahy - Publisher

Editor Bob Leahy on the latest developments in the Canadian AIDS Society (CAS) affair; he talks with those most affected

CAS downsizes by two to cope with surprise financial losses; a whistleblower among those let go

PositiveLite.com learned late Tuesday that Canadian AIDS Society staffer Jeff Potts, a ‎National Programs Consultant and one of the "whistleblowers" in the story that we broke last October, has had his employment terminated, effective immediately. A second un-named employee, a recently hired communications specialist, has also been terminated. While some were quick to speculate that Potts’ termination was the result of the discontent he voiced to the CAS board in an open letter last Fall

Looking ahead: CATIE’s Laurie Edmiston talks to PositiveLite.com

published: January, 05, 2016 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // CATIE, Features and Interviews, Opinion Pieces, Bob Leahy - Publisher

Bob Leahy in conversation with CATIE’s Executive Director Laurie Edmiston about the opportunities that working with a new federal government provides and what she sees as the road ahead for CATIE and the HIV community in the era of 90-90-90.

Looking ahead: CATIE’s Laurie Edmiston talks to PositiveLite.com

Bob Leahy: I wanted to talk to you focusing mostly on the future, Laurie ,but first let me ask you what kind of year was 2015 for HIV in Canada. A good news year?  Laurie Edmiston: I think it’s been a mixture. Certainly the last part of the year was good. I’m very enthused about the potential with the new government. I also think that the IAS conference in Vancouver was very good; there was some conclusive evidence about some important science that I think we can take into account in our

CAS speaks: The Canadian AIDS Society Interview

published: December, 21, 2015 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // Activism, Features and Interviews, Bob Leahy - Publisher

In a frank, no holds-barred interview Bob Leahy talks to CAS Board Chair David Stempowski and Executive Director Gary Lacasse about the turbulent months behind it - and the future ahead

CAS speaks: The Canadian AIDS Society Interview

 Bob Leahy: First of all congratulations, David, your appointment was announced yesterday. How do you feel about that?  David Stempwoski: I’m absolutely elated, Bob. I’m excited about the future and moving forward in a constructive way. It’s an exciting time for me.  Bob: Tell me why you both are speaking to PositiveLite.com now.  David: We always knew we were going to do an interview with you, Bob. In fact you are our first official interview to address all these issues, because

90-90-90 endorsed by Canadian Government (part two: Julio Montaner speaks out)

published: December, 16, 2015 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // Activism, As Prevention , Features and Interviews, Health, Treatment, Bob Leahy - Publisher

On December 1, The Canadian Government endorsed 90-90-90 but the long awaited announcement went virtually unnoticed until reported by PositiveLite.com. Today Bob Leahy interviews B.C.'s Julio Montaner about what this announcement means for Canada

90-90-90 endorsed by Canadian Government (part two: Julio Montaner speaks out)

JULIO MONTANER FROM THE BC CENTRE FOR EXCELLENCE IN HIV/AIDS TALKS ABOUT HOW 90-90-90 CAME TO BE ENDORSED, HIS DEALINGS WITH JUSTIN TRUDEAU, HIS THOUGHTS ABOUT THE FUTURE OF PHAC AND THE VALUE OF INDEPENDENT VOICES Bob Leahy: I wanted to talk to you about the government’s 90-90-90 statement on World Aids Day. It was very interesting that few picked on up on it.  What’s your observation about why it didn’t get out properly? Julio Montaner: There is no way I can answer that question 

“It’s all I’ve ever known”

published: November, 26, 2015 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // African, Caribbean and Black, Activism, Youth, Women, Features and Interviews, Living with HIV, Population Specific , Bob Leahy - Publisher

Bob Leahy interviews Ontario’s Muluba Habanyama, a twenty-two year old born with HIV who lived with a family secret for twenty-one years to emerge as one of our busiest and most promising young activists

“It’s all I’ve ever known”

Bob Leahy: Good to talk to you, Muluba. You are twenty-two, HIV-positive and you are studying journalism at Sheridan College. How do people there process that?  Muluba Habanyama: Well, it’s all I’ve ever known. I just disclosed almost a year ago, last World AIDS Day, so they have actually been really supportive, really inspired by my story. You have had a fascinating journey. You’re fairly public now. But let’s start with how did that decision to disclose happen? Probably about fiv

The Charlie Sheen interview with TODAY's Matt Lauer

published: November, 17, 2015 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // Activism, Arts and Entertainment, Features and Interviews, Revolving Door, Living with HIV, Guest Authors, Opinion Pieces

For those who haven’t seen it, the news officially broke this morning in this interview that Charlie Sheen is HIV-positive

The Charlie Sheen interview with TODAY's Matt Lauer

“I’m not really the good poster man for this but I won’t shun away from responsibilities and opportunities that draw me to helping others.”  “I’m gonna ride this wave of support. If there’s one guy on this planet to contract this that’s going to deliver a cure, it’s me. Seriously." Part one  Part two  Part three  An open letter from Charlie Sheen: Roughly four years ago, I suddenly found myself in the throws of a seismic and debilitating three-day cluster-migraine-l

The Story of M

published: November, 02, 2015 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // Features and Interviews, Health, Revolving Door, Living with HIV, Guest Authors

Occasional guest writer Joe Lethbridge from Kitchener Ontario interviews M, a homeless HIV-positive man about the impact crystal meth addiction has had on his life

The Story of M

Joe says: "While this may be a rough read, I think it is an important one.  The Language may seem foul but I want to try to convey the real feelings of a recovering meth addict Meth is not a drug used by any one sector of society. One-time use of meth may and often does lead to addiction. Recovery has a high remission rate; depression and lack of  self0worth often brings people  back to meth. The only real hope is cognitive behavioural therapy, which works best  if the person wants help a

The Danny Pintauro Interview

published: October, 22, 2015 Written by // Guest Authors - Revolving Door Categories // Gay Men, Arts and Entertainment, Features and Interviews, Television, Revolving Door, Living with HIV, Guest Authors, Population Specific

For eight years, he played Jonathan Bower on televisions "Who's the Boss". He starred in Stephen King's "Cujo". For twelve years, Danny Pintauro had a secret. Danny is HIV positive. Now Joe Lethbridge interviews him for PositiveLite.com

The Danny Pintauro Interview

Seeing clips of Danny Pintauro on "The View" and hearing holier than thou, judgemental comments from clueless host Candace Bure , I knew HIV still had stigma surrounding it. Danny kept his cool. He carried himself with grace and kept his head held high. Not only openly gay, but publicly open with his HIV status, I wanted to know how someone in the public eye could face scrutinity  and be judged unfairly. I wanted to know more about the man, rather than the entertainer or "former child star"

Our landscape, our peers: Andrew Beckerman

published: October, 20, 2015 Categories // Gay Men, Features and Interviews, Living with HIV, Population Specific

Philip Dawson talks to AIDS Vancouver Island's Andrew Beckerman, a long-term survivor with a long background of volunteering who says “the challenge is how to make this world a more equitable place by enabling fellow peers."

Our landscape, our peers: Andrew Beckerman

Our Landscape, Our Peers is a way to connect different voices, one by one - as an open reading for peers of many walks of life, some distant miles away, and bound together as we live with HIV.  There's always a different voice out there in the landscape of people living with HIV. There is always another way someone has fought and moved forward. There is always going to be the need to encourage a peer to say what she/he thinks with articulation – to listen - and hope we can use some of the

Youth and the aboriginal way

published: October, 13, 2015 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // Youth, Features and Interviews, Living with HIV, Population Specific , Bob Leahy - Publisher

Bob Leahy talks to Preston Leon, the young man from BC’s interior diagnosed at 16 we have featured here before, about the influence aboriginal ways have had on his journey as a young gay man living with HIV

Youth and the aboriginal way

Bob Leahy: Hi Preston: Thanks for talking to PositiveLite.com again. Now I want to jump in and say right away that I know you are aboriginal, I know, you're gay or two-spirited and I know that you are HIV-positive. Those are three factors which individually and collectively can lead to discrimination.  Preston Leon: Well, in this town I can’t go around thinking it’s OK if I kiss my partner; it’s probably worse on the reservation itself. The elders, in certain cases, won’t accept it.

Catching up with the first Miss America to champion AIDS awareness

published: September, 29, 2015 Written by // Mark S. King - My Fabulous Disease Categories // Activism, Current Affairs, Women, Features and Interviews, International , Mark S. King

Mark S King says “When Miss Florida 1992, Leanza Cornett, competed for the crown of Miss America 1993, . . we adored her because she proudly chose an AIDS awareness platform — and she meant it down to her lovely bones.”

Catching up with the first Miss America to champion AIDS awareness

When Miss Florida 1992, Leanza Cornett, competed for the crown of Miss America 1993, she didn’t just have gay hearts aflutter over our love for pageant competitions. We adored her because she proudly chose an AIDS awareness platform — and she meant it down to her lovely bones. When she won, she made good on her promise to bring HIV issues to an audience that wasn’t used to Miss America hanging out with dying gay men or performing condom demonstrations. My interview with the groundbre

Talking early treatment issues

published: September, 15, 2015 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // As Prevention , Features and Interviews, Health, Treatment, Opinion Pieces, Bob Leahy - Publisher

Bob Leahy talks with the world's leading treatment as prevention advocate, B.C.'s Dr. Julio Montaner, about new research that broadens the case for early treatment – and why Canada still needs to fully embrace its benefits.

Talking early treatment issues

Vancouver, BC [September, 2015] A new study finds patients who start HIV combination antiretroviral treatment at high CD4 levels – when the immune system is still healthy – have higher likelihood of long-term adherence and better clinical outcomes. Published in the journal AIDS, the new research confirms, at the population level, the results of recent randomized clinical trials supporting immediate initiation of HIV treatment. “Our study counters concerns among clinicians that individua

Bob Leahy interviews poz US Marine gone viral Tanner White

published: September, 14, 2015 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // Social Media, Dating, Activism, Gay Men, Features and Interviews, Lifestyle, Living with HIV, Population Specific , Bob Leahy - Publisher

A conversation with the out poz and proud US marine who gained fame for asking gay country star Steve Grand to be his date for the Marine Corps Ball – on YouTube

Bob Leahy interviews poz US Marine gone viral Tanner White

From poz.com “Tanner White, who bills himself as “your favorite positive Marine” on his YouTube channel, has posted a new video in which he asks singer-songwriter Steve Grand to the 2015 Marine Corps Ball. Grand is an openly gay country singer who is as famous for his hunky body as for his music. White is an HIV-positive social media activist who posts videos about HIV prevention and awareness. UPDATE: Steve Grand Says Yes to Date With HIV-Positive Marine Bob Leahy: First of all, Tann

Here’s help with telling your (HIV) story

published: September, 03, 2015 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // Social Media, Features and Interviews, Living with HIV, Media, Bob Leahy - Publisher

Editor Bob Leahy in conversation with Camille de Putter, author of Storytelling with Heart, a workbook designed to help people tell their stories. It's about working through shame, silence and secrets and learning to write and share.

Here’s help with telling your (HIV) story

Bob Leahy: Hi Camiille. Why don’t you tell me first what people can expect from your book?  Camille DePutter. Sure. I wrote the book because I feel that for many of us we have a sense that we have a story we would like to tell about ourselves and our experiences so I wanted to help people do that, to help them do some of the thinking about what their personal stories may be. It’s a way to start working with those stories, to put them down on paper, think about them in new ways and start

Charles Sanchez gives life with HIV the full comic treatment in Merce

published: August, 24, 2015 Written by // Bob Leahy - Publisher Categories // Gay Men, Arts and Entertainment, Movies, Features and Interviews, Television, Living with HIV, Population Specific , Bob Leahy - Publisher

Bob Leahy talks to New York poz guy Charles Sanchez, producer, writer and star of Merce, a TV web series that’s been compared to "Seinfeld with HIV".

Charles Sanchez gives life with HIV the full comic treatment in Merce

"Merce, is about a middle aged, HIV+ guy living in NYC, and it's a musical comedy! And here's the subversive part: it's not sad and no one dies. As an HIV+ man, I've been starving for a story about HIV that isn't sad. The show is bright, colorful, campy and fun. Each episode is less than 10 minutes long, and each has an original musical number. The goal of the show is to present a fresh idea of what a person with HIV looks like, and to add some humor into the conversation about HIV. After all

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