The Stigma Stops With Me


A story of courage and determination, Damaries "Dee" Cruz shares her story of living with, and raising awareness of, AIDS in South Florida.

Part One: This is your mission

Damaries "Dee" Cruz talks about the day she learned she was HIV positive. Doctors told her she had one year to live. She continues to devote her life to raising awareness about HIV and AIDS -- 17 years later.

Part Two: It's my personal choice

Cruz made a personal choice to pursue holistic treatments for her illness. She does not take traditional medications, despite her doctor’s recommendations. She explains her controversial decision.

Part Three: Stop the stigma

Cruz talks about the stigma still attached to HIV/AIDS. We see her in action in public forums speaking frankly about her the disease.

Part Four: Get tested and re-tested

Cruz discusses the importance of getting tested and being re-tested. We see her on a date and she talks about the precautions she takes to have modern day romantic relationships.

About the FIU project

AIDS hits close to home for many of the students who worked on the presentation.
Watch the video | Read their story

Read more Health stories from the Miami Herald

Miami Herald

Join the

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category