PCAF TO LEAD PIERCE COUNTY’S MONKEYPOX COMMUNITY AWARENESS & OUTREACH EFFORTS IN PARTNERSHIP WITH TACOMA-PIERCE COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT TO HISTORICALLY UNSERVED COMMUNITIES
TACOMA, WASHINGTON — On Wednesday, September 7, 2022, PCAF, the South Sound’s premiere
HIV service organization, was awarded $300,000 from the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department
(TPCHD) to provide culturally responsive and tailored community awareness and outreach to
communities greatly impacted by the monkeypox virus (MPV).
Beginning immediately, PCAF, in partnership with TPCHD, will provide education on how MPV is and is
not likely to be acquired; how to mitigate impact if one is exposed via vaccination and safer sex health
practices; and how to access effective treatment if one is diagnosed. PCAF has provided supportive
healthcare services to Pierce County and surrounding areas for over 35 years and has earned the trust
of community members.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 90% of people diagnosed
with MPV identify as sexual minority men (SMM) or transgender women/gender nonconforming people
who have recently engaged in sexual activity with other SMM. Nationally, 31% of diagnosed people
identify as Hispanic/Latinx, 31% as Black/African American and 31% as non-Hispanic white people.
Pierce County’s match national trends even though Hispanic/Latinx and Black/African American people
represent a smaller share of the general population. Furthermore, 41% of MPV diagnoses nationally
are people who are living with HIV.
PCAF has 35 years of expertise serving communities which are disproportionately impacted by HIV,
including but not limited to transgender/gender nonconforming people, sexual minority men, people
using substances, unhoused people, Black people, Latinx people, as well as the intersections of those
communities. These are also the communities disproportionately impacted by MPV.
“For over the past three decades, TPCHD and PCAF have effectively partnered to directly address the
needs of our fellow residents from a health equity lens,” said Ace Robinson (he/él), MHL, MPH, chief
executive officer of PCAF. “We commend TPCHD for being proactive in ensuring a community-centered
approach to addressing MPV from the start. What we have all learned from over forty years of the HIV
response is that the Community knows what’s best for the Community. It is up to organizations like
PCAF and institutions like TPCHD to follow their directives.”
Through education and service, PCAF prevents HIV acquisition, assists persons impacted by HIV and
associated illnesses, and combats HIV-related stigma and discrimination. With offices in Tacoma and
Olympia, PCAF serves Pierce, Thurston, Lewis, and Mason counties. PCAF is dedicated to assisting
persons living with HIV to meet their whole-person needs for food, housing, healthcare, and personal
support that can prevent people living with HIV from thriving. More information is available at