April 2, 2012
City Council member Corey O'Connor on Friday unveiled legislation to create the Pittsburgh HIV/AIDS Commission. On Tuesday, O'Connor plans to introduce his measure establishing the commission to oversee a coordinated response and start a fresh dialogue about the disease.
O'Connor's proposal would create a 30-member commission comprising city and Allegheny County health officials, residents living with HIV/AIDS and representatives of business, academia, and treatment organizations. He said other cities have similar commissions and noted the group could provide new energy for grassroots outreach.
"It's a public health issue," said Council member Bill Peduto, who attended Friday's announcement at the AIDS Task Force offices in East Liberty. Some 3,000 people in the county are known to have the disease; others, meanwhile, do not know they are infected or have not sought treatment, said ATF Executive Director Charles Christen.