Decatur – November 30, 2011 – The Illinois Department of Corrections women’s facility in Decatur will observe World AIDS Day with the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) to promote awareness of HIV/AIDS and the risky behaviors that can lead to infection. The
program, which includes a panel discussion with health experts from IDPH, a discussion and a visual media presentation, will reach out to approximately 300 of the female offender population at Decatur Correctional Center. This panel will be led by the Springfield Decatur Area Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
“Many of the women who are incarcerated at Decatur Correctional Center are impacted by the unsafe behaviors that could lead to contracting HIV and/or AIDS. The department appreciates the support of Delta Sigma Theta, the Illinois Department of Public Health and all of the volunteers who provide information and resources that positively affect the reentry of these women back into society,” said Director Salvador “Tony” Godinez.
Ten offenders at the Decatur Correctional Center, who serve as peer educators, will also be on hand to provide resources to participants.
“These offenders are trained by staff and are very knowledgeable regarding how the transmission of HIV/AIDS and other communicable diseases can be prevented. They provide offender education at events within the facility and are available to talk confidentially to offenders whenever requested,” said Warden Shelith Hansbro.
Delta Sigma Theta is an international sorority with more than 250,000 members in over 940 chapters in several countries. The sorority supports the World AIDS Campaign by promoting workshops, programs and distributing information. World AIDS Day is officially observed on December 1st.
IDOC operates 27 prisons throughout Illinois in addition to work camps, boot camps and adult transition centers. The agency is committed to operating a safe and secure prison system as well as enhancing prison-based treatment, prevention programs and the successful reentry of inmates into society, which will lead to lowering recidivism rates.