We, the undersigned, believe that the recent reports of derogatory songs and references to HIV that were included in Exhibit B of your investigation of the Ohio State University Marching Band are absolutely appalling, disgusting, slanderous and stigmatizing to the at-large HIV community.
Read this article via the Bilerico Project Investigation: Ohio State Band Mocked 'Fags With AIDS'
We must remind you that Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center is home to one of the foremost AIDS Clinical Trial Units in the United States and that Wexner receives Federal and State monies to provide care and treatment to many HIV Positive individuals in the Columbus area and throughout the State of Ohio. After these revelations, why would HIV-Positive individuals continue to go to your institution for care? If anything, those individuals could very well drop out of care in contravention to the National HIV/AIDS Strategy.
There is no doubt in our mind that your institution has allowed this toxic atmosphere to fester over a considerable period of time and we as a community cannot and will not any longer tolerate this type of stigmatizing behavior to continue from any section of your public institution.
Regardless of the employee’s and student’s personal narratives on the disposition of the current investigation, we strongly request that a public apology be given to the HIV community by the University and assurances that this extremely offensive situation will be dealt with a remedial plan which includes mandatory HIV education for both employees and students at your institution.
The Ohio State University Marching Band is one of the ambassadors for the entire institution and that includes the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center; therefore, we request that the Board of Trustees act swiftly to correct this situation.
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