ACT UP Dublin teams up with Irish clothing company to launch new T-shirt with vital community message

The t-shirts are emblazoned with the U=U message. U=U, or Undetectable=Untransmittable is the scientific fact that a person living with HIV who is on effective treatment with an undetectable viral load cannot pass on HIV through sex. 

Split screen of New ACT UP t-shirt and ACT UP Dublin at Pride 2019

ACT UP Dublin is teaming up with Ethical Irish Clothing Company, Grey + Ginger to launch a brand new T-Shirt with vital community message. ACT UP Dublin led the 2019 Dublin LGBTQ+ Pride Parade wearing U=U t-shirts designed by member and artist Will St Leger. Due to a lack of resources ACT UP Dublin was unable to deliver a commercial outlet for people to purchase the t-shirts, despite intense demand.

They explained that “with recent apparel successes from PozVibes Podcast and GCN magazine’s collaboration with Brian Teeling, the group recognised an opportunity to collaborate with a clothing company on the designs and just over two years on from the Pride Parade, has teamed up with LGBTQ+ owned company Grey + Ginger. 

Grey + Ginger is a Galway-based clothing brand founded and run by duo Peter Bradley and Paul McConnell. Grey + Ginger’s designs are creatively unique, drawing influence from the trailblazing, socially conscious faces of the world.

Of the collaboration, Grey + Ginger’s Paul McConnell said:

“We are delighted to be working with ACT UP Dublin with their ongoing campaign to keep this conversation going in the right direction. Show some support and look fab while doing it.”

The limited-edition t-shirt, depicting U=U in rainbow design, has been updated from Will St Leger’s initial artwork from 2019. ACT UP Dublin member and graphic designer Pradeep Mahadeshwar took Will’s design and incorporated the new Progress Flag that includes the colours black, brown, light blue, pink, and white stripes highlighting the support of marginalized people of color, trans individuals, those living with HIV and those who have been lost to HIV-related illness.

The Progress Flag was created in 2018 by American designer Daniel Quasar and has been widely adopted around the globe by various LGBTQ+ organisations. ACT UP Dublin has also added a short, easily digestible explanation of U=U to the t-shirt and created a paper insert about U=U to be added to each sale.

Speaking about the launch, ACT UP Dublin member Holly Shortall said:

People living with HIV who are on effective treatment cannot pass HIV on to sexual partners. This is a scientific fact and a vital message that we want to celebrate. HIV stigma has been hitting the headlines globally over the last few weeks and we want to continue to demolish it. We have been trying to get these t-shirts off the ground for quite some time, and have worked as a group to develop the design and concept. We’re so grateful to Grey + Ginger for supporting us and allowing ACT UP Dublin to continue our vital work.

You can buy the t-shirt from the Grey + Ginger website with €5 from each sale going directly to ACT UP Dublin to support the work they do. Find out more here.

© 2021 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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