Hey Slim how are you? Give us an update – what have you been up to since shooting Me Myself And HIV?

Hey MTV, I’ve been good! I’ve been real busy working on my upcoming album – which will hopefully be out later this year, I have also been involved in a few other projects, including some public speaking about HIV/AIDS.


What’s happened to his single since he played it on air, what has been the public’s reaction to you disclosing your HIV status live on air?

The single got a real positive response when it was played on the radio, people were phoning in, sharing their stories and wanting to talk to me about both the song and me, and it was a great feeling.


Releasing that track around being HIV+ shows great Leadership in tackling HIV stigma – why did you think this was so important, and why now?

In my opinion, everything has to start somewhere; this for me was a starting point for better things to happen – if we are going to fight HIV effectively we need to be able to talk about it. I wanted to tell my story and encourage others to tell theirs and show that you can still lead normal lives regardless of HIV status. I am a public speaker and a singer – I felt that I had a responsibility to do so.


Slap Dee had some great words to say about you – how important do you feel it is for public figures like himself to talk up on HIV/AIDS?

I feel it is real important for artists like Slap Dee to talk up on issues like HIV. These guys inspire people and are real role models to their fans – lots of people look up to them and if they talk positively about HIV, this could lead to people taking it seriously and realising that HIV is real and learning how they can prevent/deal with it.


What role do you feel your friend/manager, has played in helping you deal with being HIV+?

Daniel has been there for me from the beginning – from picking me up when I was at my lowest to leading me through the good times with my music. He has made me realise that my status really doesn’t matter and won’t stand in the way of me achieving my goals.


How is the relationship going with Carol? How did you feel telling her your HIV status in the show? Carol reacted relatively well, but what kind of reactions have you had from other girls?

Carol is doing good and the relationship is going really well. Telling her though, that was a difficult thing to do, but I wanted to do it properly. I believe that to make something good, you have to start it in the right way so whether Carol said yes or no I was going to tell her the truth from the start. I have had mixed responses when I have told girls in the past, some didn’t believe me and some have been uncomfortable with it. But I have always thought regardless, it is always important to be straight with the ones you are going out with.


What are your goals for the future? Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

In the future, I want to establish myself as an AIDS activist by setting up a foundation to help young people who are HIV + to talk about the virus and be positive about it. I also want to set up my own studio so I can concentrate on my music as much as possible. In 10 years? I want to be an internationally recognised music artist and producer.


In the show you talk about taking medication, how long have you been on treatment and what is treatment like for you?

I have been taking my medication for 6 years now. My body has responded well to it so far. I am very aware however, that things like stress can really have a real negative impact on the treatment.


What do you feel is your biggest challenge of living with HIV?

I think the medication is the biggest challenge – I take 2 pills a day which doesn’t sound like too much but I have to be real specific with the timing of the pills, like if I take one at 7am I have to take one at 7pm. This sometimes can be an issue as you really do have to plan – if you are even 30 minutes out on a regular basis the pills will become less effective.


Over the few months you have disclosed your status to your girlfriend, celebrity – Slap Dee, the radio listeners and everyone who watched the show – why did you think disclosing was important for you and how did you know it was the right thing to do?

Firstly, disclosing my status was important to me – as an artist I wanted to put it out there from the beginning. I wanted all of my secrets uncovered before starting a career – so rather than it being something that I have to hide, or something people were whispering about, it was something that I could embrace as part of my music.


The thought of finding out you are HIV + may put many young people off getting a test – what message do you have for anyone who perhaps feel scared or nervous about getting a HIV test?

My message to people who are nervous about getting tested is simple – whether you test or not, if you have HIV it will be there, at least if you know about it there is treatment that can extend your life considerable, you don’t want to let it go untreated you will die quicker – and who wants to do that? If you are HIV positive you have to be positive about it and you have to ensure that you are not infecting other people with it.

1

80% of all HIV transmission is sexual transmission of HIV

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There are 33 million people living with HIV globally

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HIV is transmitted through blood, sexual fluids and mother to child

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Every 12 seconds someone is newly infected with HIV

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HIV is not transmitted through tears, sweat, saliva or mosquitoes

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People aged 15-24 account for 40% of new HIV infections worldwide

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60% of people living with HIV don’t know they’re infected