"We've seen more than three years of straight increases of STDs in the city, and they're heavily disproportionate among young people," he said. "This gives us a new way to communicate and particularly with adults. ... The young people want trusted adults in their lives, and they want to have an open and honest conversation. Young people don't want to get shut down."
Some seniors are less comfortable discussing sexually transmitted diseases, yet they're engaging in the same risky behavior that adolescents do that lead to HIV infection, said Michael Kharfen, who oversees outreach for the Department of Health branch tasked with HIV and AIDS programs.