CLEVELAND — The LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland hosted a Monkeypox Community Forum on Wednesday night. The goal was to spread correct information about the virus to keep people informed. 

What You Need To Know

  • LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland hosted a monkeypox forum that was open to the community

  • Health care professionals attended and answered questions that the public had about the virus

  • Stonewall Columbus hosted an Instagram live about monkeypox in partnership with the Columbus Health Department

Matthew Graves, director of development and communication for the center, spoke about why the group hosted the event. 

“We’ve seen some trends that would indicate that the virus is spreading quickly in the LGBTQ plus community. We wanted to come together as a community and make sure that the community is informed,” he said. 

Although a common misconception about monkeypox is that people from the LGBTQ+ community are mostly the ones who get it, Graves said that’s not true. 

“The virus is targeting not just our community. It’s targeting, you know, the spread is amongst everyone,” he said. 

There were health care professionals from the City of Cleveland, Cuyahoga County Board of Health and Cleveland Department of Health in attendance. A member from the Central Outreach Wellness Center, which does a lot with monkeypox testing and vaccinations, was also in attendance. They were there to answer people’s questions about this virus. 

There are other organizations pushing out information and resources about monkeypox. Stonewall Columbus hosted an Instagram live with Columbus Health Commissioner Dr. Mysheika Roberts to talk about the virus. 

“Monkeypox is not a sexually transmitted infection. It is a viral condition that can be spread from person to person with prolonged skin to skin contact or with contaminated objects,” she said. 

As more information becomes available, organizations like the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland and Stonewall Columbus will continue to make resources available to communities across Ohio.