On February 6, 2013, Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) introduced H.RES.59, "Supporting the goals and ideals of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day," which was cosponsored by 43 other Members of Congress. The bill resolved that the House of Representatives take actions that include: supporting the implementation of the National HIV/AIDS Strategy, supporting effective and comprehensive HIV prevention education programs and connecting those in need to clinically and culturally appropriate care and treatment. While speaking on the House floor, Congresswoman Lee made the following statement regarding HIV and the upcoming sequester:
"Despite the progress we've made in recent years, this Congress has already made unconscionable budget cuts to critical programs that many families and communities rely on. A new analysis by the Foundation for AIDS Research and the National Minority AIDS Council shows that if budget sequestration were to take effect, communities of color would be disproportionately impacted, including more than 6,500 individuals who [would] immediately lose access to HIV treatment. We must reject these cuts and expand effective prevention, care and treatment programs so that we can once and for all stamp HIV and AIDS off the face of the Earth."
Both Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Congressman Alcee Hastings (D-FL) issued statements acknowledging National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, recognizing the disproportionate impact of HIV/AIDS on the African-American community and calling for continued legislative support for programs that assist people living with HIV/AIDS.
The full text of the bill is available by clicking here.
To see Congresswoman Lee's speech given on February 6, 2013, click here.