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U.S. News

New York: Nine Arrested in City Hall AIDS Protest

May 13, 2009

Dozens of New York activists protested city budget cuts of $10 million for AIDS services and $20 million in general health services slated for the fiscal year that begins July 1.

Nine people were arrested May 6 for their part in the protest that blocked the entrance to Mayor Michael Bloomberg's City Hall office.

The proposed city budget responds to the difficult economic climate with $3.4 billion in combined cuts to agency budgets. The $59.4 billion budget anticipates laying off 3,700 municipal employees and allowing attrition to eliminate another 9,700 positions.

Included in the $10 million in cuts in AIDS services are a reduction of $6 million in housing for HIV-positive persons, a cut of $900,000 in HIV prevention services and $500,000 less for meal subsidies for those with HIV.

The AIDS advocacy group Housing Works spoke for those at the protest. 'This is an important issue and we want to make sure that the mayor is focused on this,' spokeswoman Diana Scholl said.

The group also called for more input on distribution of federal stimulus funding, $1 billion of which has been directed toward Medicaid without community involvement. 'The reason we are going after the stimulus money is we saw it was a pot of money that was being used for reasons that we don't know and we want to see it being used for supportive housing,' said Scholl.

Other groups protesting on the City Hall steps included the Gay Men's Health Crisis, Bronx AIDS Services, and Hombres Latinos De Ambiente.

Back to other news for May 2009

Adapted from:
Gay City News (New York City)
05.06.2009; Duncan Osborne

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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
See Also
HIV/AIDS in the Northeast