New York State Department of Health Recognizes Black Pride Month

Black Pride events take place in NYC from August 17 to August 21

Events will showcase LGBTQ businesses of color and will highlight human rights

ALBANY, N.Y. (August 16, 2022) – The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) is proud to join communities of color in celebrating August as Black Pride Month as the Department continues its ongoing work to identify and reduce health challenges that continue to face the community.

"As we celebrate Black Pride Month, the Department remains dedicated to establishing LGBTQ-affirming health care, free of stigma and barriers," Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said. "Since the Stonewall protests of 1969, trailblazing members of the black lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and gender non-conforming community have paved the groundwork for equal rights in New York and beyond. While there is still so much work to do, the Department will continue to strive for a gender-affirming public health care system that will best serve the entire community."

The month-long celebration culminates in a 5-day event in New York City, kicking off on August 17 with the "Healthcare as Human Rights" panel at the LGBT Community Center ("The Center") in Manhattan. The panel will feature Director of NYSDOH Office of LGBTQ Services, Kraig Pannell. This year will focus on two topics impacting the LGBTQ community: Monkeypox and Mental Hygiene.

"Every day everywhere around the world there are people struggling to be seen, to be heard, to be acknowledged, to be and feel equal and to be and feel free," Executive Director of NYC Center for Black Pride, Lee Soulja said. "So, until the day when all people understand that equality means each individual or group of people are given the same resources or opportunities, there must be a Pride."

During Pride Month in June, New York State released a new report highlighting the unique health disparities facing the LGBTQ population as part of NYSDOH's commitment to identifying and reducing these barriers. The report is publicly available and has been distributed to local county health departments, community-based organizations, and health service networks. The findings of that report will directly impact the programming NYSDOH prioritizes in the year ahead.

While NYSDOH continues its rigorous response to the Monkeypox outbreak, the Department also recently launched a new #SexualHealth and PrEP Awareness Campaigns to raise awareness for sexual health and to normalize sexual health behaviors. The #SexualHealth Campaign includes a publicly available toolkit inclusive of program ambassadors, social media messages, images, and videos.

As New York State celebrates pioneering members of the Black Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer community, it's important to remember that despite the work that's been done so far, there is still more to do. The Department looks forward to continued dialogue with community leaders, providers, and LGBTQ New Yorkers to address these urgent and long-term community needs.

NYC Black Pride Events Include:

August 17 – Healthcare as Human Rights Panel

  • Director of NYSDOH Office of LGBTQ Services, Kraig Pannell, will provide an overview of the monkeypox virus, stigma and the impact the virus is having on the LGBTQ community.

August 18 –Reflections: The Gay Souls of Liberation

  • The cocktail mixer will be a time for Black LGBTQ individuals to reflect back at life through the lens of artwork, photos, videos and music, celebrating the community's journey through history. The event includes a panel discussion of the visual art.

August 19 – The Heritage Award Ceremony at the Schomberg Center in Harlem

  • Honorees include Governor Hochul's Director of LGBTQ+ Affairs Ron Zacchi and Deputy Director of LGBTQ+ Affairs Chanel Lopez; Ceyenne Doroshow, executive director of GLITS; "Pose" star Michaela Jaé Rodriguez; and actress, model, and dancer Leyna Bloom.

August 20 – Black Pride Expo

  • Event showcasing LGBTQ businesses of color, service organizations and Pride sponsors.
  • Event will also include the Trans Bodybuilding Competition and the First Annual Black Pride International Pageant.

August 21 –Pride at the Beach

  • Will feature performances by singers Inaya Day, Octavia Lambertis and SuSu Bobien.

For LGBTQ healthcare resources, visit Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Health Care (

For information on healthcare disparities facing the LGBTQ community, visit In Recognition of Pride Month, State Department of Health Releases Health Disparities Report On LGBTQ New Yorkers (

To learn more about NYSDOH AIDS Institute programs and priorities, visit AIDS Institute (

To learn more about monkeypox, visit Monkeypox (