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AIDS Action Council, Names Project Foundation, Kick Off "Remember Them With Your Vote" Campaign

January 23, 1996

Washington, D.C. -- AIDS Action Council and the NAMES Project Foundation will kick off their 1996 national voter registration campaign, "Remember Them With Your Vote," at the first display this year of the AIDS Memorial Quilt. Four hundred panels representing individuals who have died of AIDS will be displayed January 25 - 28 at the Old Navy Commissary at 1100 Commissary Road in Key West, Florida.

"Remember Them With Your Vote" combines AIDS Action's voter registration and education efforts with the NAMES Project's displays of the AIDS Memorial Quilt in 25 congressional districts across the country. The campaign will culminate in the display of the entire 45,000-panel Quilt on October 11 - 13, 1996 on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

"The next few sessions of Congress will be critical to our nation's continued commitment to caring for people and families affected by this epidemic," said AIDS Action Council Executive Director Mark Barnes. "We want people to recognize their power as voters and to use that considerable power to help shape the outcome of the federal AIDS debate."

"When they step into the voting booth in November, we're asking Americans to think of their family members, friends and neighbors who are living with HIV," said Anthony Turney, Executive Director of The NAMES Project Foundation. "By coupling displays of the AIDS Memorial Quilt to voter registration and education efforts, we also ensure that those we have lost continue to fight on with us to help bring this plague to an end."

According to Florida's Office of Disease Prevention, as of October 31, 1995, 51,001 AIDS cases have been reported in the state of Florida. This statistic is included in a Florida-specific AIDS fact sheet that will be distributed to an expected 7,500 visitors to the Key West display. AIDS-specific voting records indicating how members of Congress have voted on key AIDS issues and national voter registration forms will also be made available. Display attendees will be encouraged to fill out voter registration forms which will then be forwarded to the state's Federal Election Board. In addition to providing voter information and registration forms, NAMES Project and AIDS Action volunteers and staff will be available at the Key West display to answer questions from the public and the press about the campaign.

Founded in 1984, AIDS Action Council is the only national organization solely devoted to shaping federal AIDS policy. AIDS Action represents more than 1,000 community-based AIDS service organizations throughout the United States.

Founded in 1987, the San Francisco-based NAMES Project Foundation sponsors and displays the AIDS Memorial Quilt to help bring an end to the AIDS epidemic. Through a network of 40 national NAMES Project chapters and 33 international affiliates, the AIDS Memorial Quilt is seen by more than one million people annually at nearly 2,000 displays. Money raised at Quilt displays is granted to organizations that provide direct services to people everywhere who are living with HIV and AIDS.

For more information, contact:
Jose Zuniga or Beth Jones
AIDS Action Council
1875 Connecticut Avenue NW #700
Washington DC 20009
202-986-1345 (fax)
202-332-9614 (tty)

Greg Lugliani or Scott Williams
The NAMES Project
(415) 882-5500

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This article was provided by AIDS Action Council.
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