Chicago city council calls for $1 million in AIDS funding
Members of the Chicago city council on Monday called on Mayor Richard Daley to allocate an additional $1 million in funding for city HIV/AIDS programs in his proposed 2004 budget. "Although the AIDS epidemic has been steadily increasing in Chicago, city support for AIDS services has not kept pace with the need," the members wrote in a letter delivered to Daley. The funding need is especially great because corporate donations for HIV prevention services in the city have fallen by about 8% during the past year and there is little hope of receiving additional state funding for prevention programs due to an ongoing budget crisis in Illinois, according to the letter. The council members also pointed out that HIV/AIDS is disproportionately affecting minorities in the city, with blacks accounting for 66% of recently diagnosed AIDS cases and 64% of new HIV infections. Puerto Ricans in the Chicago area also are experiencing disproportionately high AIDS diagnoses.