STI Empowerment Symposium [FREE]

🎟️This event is FREE. RSVP to claim your spot!🎟️

About: Plura's 2024 STI Empowerment Symposium

Being a responsible sexual adult requires having up-to-date knowledge about STI's, their risks, the social stigmas attached to them, and a healthy understanding of personal risk tolerance. We are thrilled to invite our community to a shame-free and empowering set of workshops from three incredible educators that will help you feel confident and responsible as you navigate the terrain of dating and playing with new partners.

This workshop is part of our Consent Skillz series. To learn more about our monthly free consent workshops check out our Consent Hub [].


4:15pm PT / 7:15pm ET: Opening Circle with Noa Elan

4:30pm PT / 7:30pm ET: Everything You Need to Know about HPV with Mara Roy

5:30pm PT / 8:30pm ET: Your Safer Sex Roadmap with Reid Mihalko

7pm PT / 10pm ET: Safe Slutting with Herpes with Safe Slut (aka Cassie Black)

Workshops Descriptions

Everything You Need to Know about HPV with Mara Roy

Did you know that Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) is the most common STI in the US, and yet, 70 percent of American adults have never heard of it? There is a lot of mis-information and lack of information even in sex-positive communities about HPV. Learn what it is, how it’s transmitted and what you can do to prevent transmission.

Mara Roy Carpenter, Ph.D, will be discussing HPV from a science-based perspective giving you the knowledge and tools to make smart decisions for you, your family, and your partner(s). Mara (she/they) is a medical scientist who specialized in infectious disease, genetics and oncology and a relationship and intimacy coach, educator and facilitator who has practiced and taught integrative body and breath work, movement, meditation, tantra, yoga and conscious touch for over 20 years

Your Safer Sex Roadmap with Reid Mihalko

This workshop is designed to give you the tools to discern what your health and emotional safety needs are and how to communicate them clearly, concisely, and without shame. Reid will talk about what “safer sex” actually means (and what it doesn’t!) and go through “Harm Reduction” and “Risk Reduction” models of safer sex. Additionally you'll learn how to identify your emotional safety factors and health safety factors, and how to communicate them clearly.

Reid Mihalko (he/him) of is an internationally known sex and relationship geek who helps adults create more self-esteem, self-confidence, and greater health and accountability in their relationships and sex lives using an inspiring mixture of humor, personal stories, keen insight, and comprehensive sexual health information. In early 2018, some very brave people came forward during #MeToo sharing harms that Reid had caused them. The formal, year-long process along with Reid’s apology and resources were shared publicly and can be found at

Safe Slutting with Herpes with Safe Slut (aka Cassie Black)

Herpes is such a common yet highly stigmatized virus that no one wants to talk about–so let’s talk about it! In this workshop we’ll cover all the herpes facts, common herpes myths and why the unnecessary stigma came to be, how to regain confidence after a herpes diagnosis, how to navigate sex and dating, how to disclose your status, and how to be a (safe) slut with herpes. We’ll finish with a Q+A so come ready with your questions! Whether or not you have herpes, come learn how to be a herpes hottie or ally!

Cassie Black aka Safe Slut is a NYC based writer, adult model, herbalist, reiki master, content creator, and sexual health advocate. Safe Slut was diagnosed with genital herpes in November 2019. After noticing the stigma and shame surrounding being herpes positive, she created her Instagram account @safe.slut to help people take their power back while promoting sex positivity, helping to destigmatize STIs and slut shaming, and promoting safer sex practices. She is now creating her own erotic films as well as working in the mainstream adult industry as another way to destigmatize STIs and sexuality in general.


Join the event chat now and get the perspective of award-winning infectious disease specialist Andreas M. Kogelnik, MD, PhD. With a background in bioengineering and infectious diseases and over 20 years or experience, Dr. Kogelnik has a wealth of knowledge on the topic. Dr. Kogelnik will be answering questions on the chat (in-app) and throughout the symposium. 

BasisDx, the leading at-home STI testing company in the US, is the brainchild of Andreas M. Kogelnik, MD, PhD. Their innovative Pro13 home-collect STI testing kit became the first of its kind to get certified by PASS. This kit offers one of the most comprehensive testing profiles on the market, testing for 13 assays for HIV 1/2 Ag/Ab, HIV PCR, Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Syphilis, Trichomoniasis, MGen, pharyngeal, rectal and genital Chlamydia, and pharyngeal, rectal and genital Gonorrhea. Additional benefits are a more accurate and reliable testing process, faster results, and unmatched security features. It includes required televisits and identity checks for PASS certification and coming soon a BDx Molecular Profile, which scientifically validates the authenticity of each individual's sample. By reducing stigma and making sexual health more accessible, BasisDx is playing a crucial role in shrinking the national STI epidemic.  

Andreas M. Kogelnik Bio

Andreas M. Kogelnik, MD, PhD is an award-winning infectious disease specialist and CEO of BasisDx, one of the leading diagnostics laboratories in the US to offer rapid and reliable at-home testing and beyond, with a focus on personal data protection. His dedication to patient care and the advancement of medical science have earned him recognition as a prominent leader in the medical community. With a background in bioengineering and infectious diseases, Dr. Kogelnik has been in practice for over 20 years and has made significant contributions to the research of STIs, precision medicine, and general infectious diseases. His breakthrough research has offered a complex diagnostics solution in different fields, from STIs and other infectious diseases to genetics.