By Advocate.com Editors
Originally published on Advocate.com December 21 2002 12:00 AM ET
Members of the Congressional Black Caucus sent a letter Wednesday to President Bush urging the Administration to devote more attention and financial resources to the global HIV/AIDS pandemic. "It would be impossible to overstate the devastation caused to date by the global AIDS pandemic, or the urgency of the need for a greater response from the United States and the global community," the letter stated. "We must respond on an appropriate scale to address the greatest plague in recorded history."
The letter specifically calls for the Administration to provide at least $3.5 billion for international AIDS programs in 2004, with at least half that amount going to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria; to prioritize treatment for HIV-positive people rather than focus mainly on HIV prevention efforts; to help pave the way for developing countries to have access to generic anti-HIV medications; and to seek debt cancellation for poor countries so they can invest in AIDS programs.