Well, it ain’t West Hollywood. That may explain why the Madison County, Ill., health department is getting pushback on its plan to buy advertising on Grindr to promote HIV testing.
The Alton Telegraph reports that the department wanted to spend $5,500 for ads on the gay hookup site, which is owned by a Chinese billionaire and headquartered in West Hollywood.
The Madison County Board’s Finance Committee balked at that. However, the Health Committee agreed to bring the matter before the full County Board.
According to the Telegraph, County Administrator Doug Hulme said, “The administration would prefer spending locally. I think we could find a less controversial way to spend that money and reach the target audience.”
Toni Corona, administrator of the county’s health department, said it had purchased a similar ad that had a lot of success. It ran from December 2016 through March 2017, with 954 hits in February and 851 in March. The county health department’s website’s HIV testing section received only nine hits in April after the ad had finished its run. Because that ad cost only $5,000, the Health Department didn’t need the County Board’s okay.
“It’s not promoting risky sexual activity,” Corona said. “That’s already happening.”
The Health Committee voted 4-1 in favor of bringing the issue to the full County Board.