The Southern AIDS Coalition on Friday announced the release of the advocacy network's policy statements addressing the growing Southern AIDS crisis, including the need for $121.8 million in new federal funding targeted for the South. "The new face of AIDS is increasingly poor and comprised of largely minority populations," said Gene Copello, cochair of the Southern AIDS Coalition and executive director of Florida AIDS Action. "We are calling on the Administration to fully address the needs of the domestic epidemic in the United States, including the South. We are requesting $121,806,000 in new federal funding to address the HIV/AIDS crisis in the South--improving access to lifesaving care, medications, and prevention."
The coalition has requested more than $25 million for HIV prevention programs and nearly $49 million for anti-HIV medication programs. The policy statements are broken down into two areas--prevention and care. Within these two categories, the members of the Southern AIDS Coalition, comprising representatives of 14 Southern states and the District of Columbia, address HIV/AIDS needs in the South, including: establishing federal program policies that ensure greater equity in comprehensive and appropriate HIV/AIDS prevention services; acquiring state and local government support to "increase human and financial resources directed to communities bearing a significant and disproportionate impact of HIV/AIDS"; and ensuring all persons within the United States, regardless of their geographic location, have access to appropriately trained HIV-specific primary medical care providers and anti-HIV medications.
For more information on the network's public policy statements, call (813) 974-2598 or send e-mail to [email protected].