Nathan Townsend is a gay African-American man originally from Georgia who has lived with HIV for nearly four decades. He has encountered multiple layers of discrimination throughout his life, having been diagnosed with HIV in the 1980s during the early years of the epidemic; and recalls fearing he would never live a full life. He now works every day with HIV-impacted communities.
In 2021, he looks forward to a Biden administration and Congress that will prioritize and pass the Equality Act for all LGBTQ Americans. He believes that the legislation is intricately linked to helping improve the daily lives of those living with HIV. “As Americans, we should be able to participate in all aspects of daily life with dignity and respect, and without fear of discrimination,” he says. “If we wholeheartedly want to end the HIV epidemic in the United States, we must seize the moral high ground and ensure LGBTQ Americans are provided with equal rights, better access to care, and increased secure housing. Federal nondiscrimination legislation will help us get there.”