Wednesday, August 5, 2009

HIV/AIDS cuts A decade lost‏

LETTER FROM: Craig E. Thompson Executive Director of AIDS Project Los Angeles

It’s like we’re back in the terrible 1990s. That’s just how far back we’ll be in the fight against HIV/AIDS due to Governor Schwarzenegger’s staggering state budget cuts.

The new state budget strips $85 million from California’s HIV/AIDS programs.

These are life-saving programs that provide HIV prevention, counseling, food assistance, home healthcare and more. Here at AIDS Project Los Angeles, we know firsthand what this blow will mean to our 9,600 clients — and to the 60,000 men, women and children living with HIV/AIDS in the county.

Los Angeles County has the second largest AIDS epidemic in the country. For more than 25 years, APLA has been here to assist those in need and to prevent new cases of the disease. Now, as the financial crisis forces more and more people to seek our services, we’re faced with a near-insurmountable loss in state funding.

We’re facing a public health disaster. As the state cuts funding for prevention efforts, it will pay dearly for new and needlessly infected Californians entering the system. And as our resources are stretched further, we’ll be unable to assist all those in need in LA County.

We’re not standing for it. And I hope you won’t either. APLA is:

Mobilizing citizen activists to demand that the California legislature go back and find viable solutions to this crisis, and

Reaching out to all of our friends and supporters and requesting a contribution to support our work.

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