APLA Action Alert: Tell Congress Not to Cut Ryan White Funding

By Karen Ocamb

March 1, 2011

AIDS Project Los Angeles just issued this Action Alert:

ACTION ALERT: Urge Your Senators to Reject H.R. 1 and Increase HIV/AIDS Funding!
February 28, 2011

The House of Representatives has passed H.R. 1 – a bill that slashes approximately $60 billion in discretionary spending and could include cuts to the Ryan White Program and other HIV/AIDS programs. These cuts could mean loss of access to key services like oral health, nutrition support and the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) for people living with HIV.

This proposal jeopardizes key funding for critical HIV/AIDS programming here in Los Angeles. APLA’s recent award of $300,000 via the Social Innovation Fund grant, which would allow the agency to help people who are not receiving care gain access to life-saving treatment, would be completely eliminated – another blow to already-crippled budgets.

In addition, H.R. 1 impacts people living with or affected by HIV/AIDS in the United States by blocking implementation of health care reform, flat-funding domestic HIV/AIDS programs at 2010 levels, reinstating the ban federal funding for syringe exchange programs, and increasing the funding of the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) at the expense of the country’s vital public health agencies including Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) at the Department of Health and Human Services.

The Senate will most likely be voting on these issues this week. As the Senate debates these issues, tell them that the Ryan White Program and other HIV/AIDS programs need more funding, not less. No cuts to Ryan White or HIV/AIDS programs in 2011!

What You Can Do:

Call your Senators right now! Call toll-free: 1.866.220.0044 (or When you reach the Capitol Switchboard, ask to be connected to your Senators.

When you call your Senator tell them:

Reject H.R. 1. The bill imposes spending cuts that would devastate many public health programs, health care reform implementation, and other programs and agencies that provide safety net services for low-income and vulnerable populations – particularly people living with HIV/AIDS.

All components of the Ryan White Program must be protected: Over 6,000 people in the U.S. are currently on waiting lists for AIDS drugs that can save their lives. Those 6,000 people waiting for ADAP and hundreds of others excluded from access because of local eligibility criteria need medical care and support services that encourage increased health outcomes in people living with HIV.

Cuts will have consequences in our county and state: Please use your personal experiences to tell your Senators and their staffers what is at stake and what these cuts could mean to you.

Call your Senators today and urge them to stand with us to protect the Ryan White Program and other HIV/AIDS programs. Take Action Now!