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Poz Creator of 'Unsure/Positive' was Discriminated Against at Work

Photo Credit: Marc Pitler

Christian Kiley opens up to Plus about his experiences with HIV discrimination, and how he used it as inspiration for the second season. 

The hit web series “Unsure/Positive” has became an instant success. Centering around an HIV-positive lead as he carries on with life after a positive diagnoses, its storylines are authentic and universal to many people living with HIV. And like most great shows, its storyteller draws from their own reality.

In an exclusive interview with Plus, the show's creater Christian Kiley shares what he describes as the worst six months of his professional life: being discriminated against at work — an experience that inspired a storyline in season two of "Unsure/Positive."  

“I was discriminated against at work last year at Boys and Girls Club of Boston,” Kiley explains, “I went as far as filing a claim against them, which I withdrew because I had to keep my head there – living paycheck to paycheck.”

Kiley had been planning an HIV Awareness event at the Boys and Girls Club, set to happen on World AIDS Day. He talked to the rest of the staff about it leading up to event, but three hours before it was supposed to begin, he was pulled into a small office with his immediate supervisor and COO of the Club. 

“We were on speaker phone with a VP downtown,” he says, “and he proceeded to rattle off this scripted excuse as to why this World AIDS Day event wasn’t going to happen. The real reason was that I was HIV-positive, and they were worried what would happen. So I just froze… It was definitely a very discriminatory move, because had I not have had HIV and just been someone trying to spread awareness, they probably would have been, Oh we’re so proud to work with him. Instead they were like, Oh shit, this guy is going to shove his HIV in our faces. It was very disappointing.” 

After being blindsided by the whole incident, Kiley says he “intentionally forgot” about it, until it came time to writing. He now has a staff of writers this season, so when it came time to discuss storylines, he told he didn’t think it needed to be autobiographical anymore — that is, until his co-writer Jacqui Teruya intervened.

“She was like I love you and I get it you don’t want to go there,” he says, “but that story you went through is exactly the kind of story you need to be telling.” And so he did. 

The second season of "Unsure/Positive" is being written as we speak, but producers need our help to make it a reality! Its creative team launched a Kickstarter campaign, which needs to raise $7,500 by December 1, World AIDS Day. The funds will help to produce six 22-minute episodes for its second season. 

And trust us, this season is going to be epic. With the new addition of Danny Pintauro, how could it not be? 

This week, Plus has exclusive interviews with the creative team leading up to World AIDS Day. Check out the second episosde of season one below: 

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