[mgj-announce] AIDS protest at RNC, DNC, Congress
mpalmedo at cptech.org
Wed May 19 12:12:43 EDT 2004
The organizers are hoping to put on the biggest AIDS rally the US has
seen in the past 10 years. Activists from Philly, Baltimore and New
York are bussing in a ton of people, and people from other places are
coming as well, but they still need all the bodies they can get. So I
hope some of you show up.
Whether or not you can make it, I'd appreciate it if you could forward
this message around.
MAY 20, 11 am, Washington DC:
PEOPLE WITH HIV, ACTIVISTS AND CAREGIVERS MARCH ON REPUBLICAN AND
DEMOCRATIC HQs BEARING 1000 ALARM CLOCKS, BLOCK STREETS AT CONGRESS
DEMANDING ELECTION-YEAR ACTION ON HIV/AIDS, THEY SAY "WAKE UP, TIMES UP"
TO CANDIDATES, LEADERS:
NEARLY 60,000 IN USA WITHOUT AIDS DRUGS; DELAYS COSTING LIVES IN GLOBAL
Crowd gathers at Folger Park (3rd and D, SE) at 11 am, marches past RNC
and DNC, civil disobedience on W. side of Capitol
At least a thousand people living with HIV, family members and providers
of AIDS prevention and treatment services are descending in Washington DC
for an angry election-year march and civil disobedience action in the
largest effort in over a decade.
Stressing that the 8% of voters in a tight election identify HIV/AIDS as
their number-one health concern, the protesters pledge continued activity,
demanding that elected officials and candidates alike commit to
comprehensive programs to prevent HIV transmission, to bring treatment and
support services to people living with HIV, and to redouble efforts for a
cure, in the United States and around the world.
"Last week, the federally-funded Institute of Medicine gave our elected
leaders a report that verifies what we're dealing with every day in our
neighborhoods -- at least 59,000 people here in the United States can
t get stable access to life-saving AIDS drugs," said Louis Jones of the
New York City AIDS Housing Network, a member of the Still We Rise Coalition
planning events during the Republican and Democratic National Conventions.
"Over a thousand of us from across the country are coming to DC to say:
'Wake up! Time's Up! Our lives depend on these medications and support
programs, and we're going to be everywhere you are, from here to the
national political conventions to the voting booth until we see some real
action on this thing. Your own committee tells you that we can fix this
problem through strong national programs, and the time to act is now.'"
The coalition demands include:
* Full funding of domestic and global efforts to provide lifesaving HIV
medications to millions
* Full funding of the domestic and global HIV/AIDS public health
* Support of real-world, comprehensive and honest HIV prevention efforts;
* An end to politically-motivated attacks on scientific research on
* Full funding for AIDS housing programs.
"Compassion without action equals death," said Charles King, CEO of
Housing Works, the nations largest community-based AIDS group. "We have
the roadmaps to ending AIDS, from the World Health Organization right down
to the frontline-efforts of local AIDS organizations, and we are blocked
by funding gaps, moralistic attacks, and bureaucratic delays. In an era of
so much doubt and uncertainty, why are we ignoring proven methods and
promising plans to shut down this epidemic?"
"There's been a death toll through every presidential administration while
we continue to block funding for needle exchange or put up roadblocks to
getting AIDS drugs to poor nations," said Waheedah El-Shabazz of ACT UP
Philadelphia. "Believe me, those of us who continue to bury our friends
and loved ones, here and around the world, are wide awake and ready to do
what it takes to stop this epidemic. If you're running around saying stuff
like condoms don't work, or cutting funds for the programs our lives depend
upon, or even just refusing to talk about AIDS out loud and often, you're
dreaming if you think you are fighting AIDS."
A full set of information, demands and background documents related to the
May 20 demonstration are posted at:
www.champnetwork.org * www.housingworks.org * www.nycahn.org
The AIDS community's recommendations for the presidential candidates are
posted at www.aidsvote.org
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