September 15, 2011
Legislators Launch Congressional HIV/AIDS Caucus
Aims to Maintain U.S. Leadership in Struggle Against Epidemic
Washington, DC – Today Congressional leadership will launch the bipartisan Congressional HIV/AIDS Caucus (formerly the Congressional Task Force on International HIV/AIDS). Co-chaired by Representatives Barbara Lee (D-CA), Jim McDermott (D-WA) and Trent Franks (R-AZ), the Caucus will examine methods by which the United States can maintain global leadership in the response to this 30 year epidemic.
“Our nation’s response to HIV/AIDS has reached a critical turning point,” said National Minority AIDS Council Deputy Executive Director Daniel C. Montoya. “While policies like the National HIV/AIDS Strategy and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, as well as scientific advancements such as treatment as prevention and pre-exposure prophylaxis offer renewed hope for bringing an end to this epidemic, fiscal constraints and political gridlock threaten to undermine this progress. The formation of the bipartisan Congressional HIV/AIDS Caucus is an important step in ensuring that Congress does not lose sight of the impact their decisions could have on the more than one million Americans living with HIV/AIDS and the very real potential that their actions could bring an end to this 30 year struggle.”
With an estimated 56,000 new HIV infections each year, the scale of this epidemic requires the continued engagement of all segments of society, including all levels of government. With more than 50 members, the Congressional HIV/AIDS Caucus will monitor implementation of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy, financing for HIV/AIDS programs, the state of HIV/AIDS research, the role of faith-based organizations and the lead up to the 2012 International AIDS Conference, which will be held in Washington, DC. NMAC is committed to working with the Caucus to ensure that, even in these difficult financial times, the U.S. remains a leader in the struggle against this epidemic