A Bronx health clinic is promoting its services with a new video featuring Santa Claus distributing free needles and condoms.
The video features not only Santa, but also clinic workers dressed like elves dancing to José Feliciano’s “Feliz Navidad” with various needles, drug kits and condoms.
CitiWide is a needle-exchange program that offers drug users clean needles and other products to help combat HIV and hepatitis C.
The program also provides various support services to the community, such as counseling and testing.
The video concludes by noting that when the clinic opened in 1995, ”the area’s drug-user HIV rate was 54 percent, [but] today it is around 4 percent.”
“We’re at the front lines of trying to take care of a very marginalized population … that is highly stigmatized and a lot of people don’t care about,” Robert Cordero, the agency’s executive director, told DNAinfo. “So we’ve got to be creative and do stuff like Santa videos.”
According to the video’s description on YouTube, no public funds were used to create the video.