30 years ago this week: 4,700 Dallas AIDS cases

Posted on 17 Jul 2015 at 2:37pm

July 19 1985Thirty years ago this week, the headline in Dallas Voice was β€œ4,700 Dallas AIDS cases are estimated by 1990.”

According to Howie Daire, who created the Oak Lawn Counseling Center, the number of cases of AIDS in the county would skyrocket to 4,700 within five years. His source was Parkland Hospital that was trying to estimate hospital patient care needs at the time.

For the first half of 1985, 73 new cases had been diagnosed in Dallas County and 168 cases counted since the epidemic hit Dallas in 1981. There had been 77 deaths up to that point.

Sandy Horwitz, who worked for the health department at the time, said 33 additional people had been diagnosed at that time who were not county residents. Outside of Dallas and Fort Worth, there were no AIDS services in North Texas and no place else to be tested.

Also on the front page of the page 30 years ago this week was an item that the American Bar Association saw no need for gay rights legislation.

A letter to the editor argued against adopting Sam Houston Elementary School. The argument against was β€œthe Bible toting and anti-gay factions will have a field day with this.”

The school, located just off Cedar Springs Road, was one of the poorest in DISD and patrons of the of the bars have adopted the school for years providing school supplies, toys and clothing for the students. Adopting the school helped it go from failing to exemplary status over the past 30 years.

You can read this entire issue on the UNT Portal to Texas History here or explore other other copies of Dallas Voice here. If you search a term, it will take you to the front page of that issue. either scroll through the issue or do a new search for that term in that issue and it will lead you to those pages.

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