December 1 marks the 23rd anniversary of World AIDS Day. Efforts are happening across the globe to bring awareness and hopefully a cure to this pandemic.
For years, the government has had a hand in HIV and AIDS-related funding. President Obama announced on Thursday that money would be moved around for further support of the treatment of the disease. He made remarks at a World AIDS Day event at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.
Here are a few highlights from the president’s remarks:
- An additional $50 million will be allocated for HIV/AIDS prevention efforts.
- They set a goal to have an additional six million people on treatment by the end of 2013.
- The U.S. is urging other countries to keep their promise to donate to the Global Fund to attack the disease.
Using his national platform, the president also brought some attention to the minority communities being ravaged by HIV and AIDS.
“The infection rate here [in the U.S.] has been holding steady for over a decade. There are communities in this country being devastated still by this disease,” the president said.
When new infections among young, black, gay men increase by nearly fifty percent in three years, we need to do more to show them that their lives matter. When Latinos are dying sooner than other groups; when black women feel forgotten even though they account for most of the new cases among women, we need to do more,” he added.
In my opinion, more needs to be done to shine a light on these demographics that have suffered at a higher than average rate from the disease. It is a global epidemic, but in the U.S. it’s not mentioned in mainstream media how the disease has hit minority communities so hard. It’s still important to spread the message of protecting yourself, getting tested, and being safe.
For more information about where to get tested in your local area, click here.