President Biden and Congress are leading multiple failed pandemic responses, putting our communities in the crosshairs. In 2021, one person died of AIDS every minute, even though we have lifesaving treatment. People with HIV are four times more likely to develop Long COVID and more likely to die of mpox. Racism, criminalization, ableism, homophobia, and transphobia have increased pandemic-fueled suffering and loss in Black, Hispanic, American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, and other Indigenous communities. In the U.S., Black people are twice as likely as white people to die of COVID. Worldwide, four times as many people have died of COVID-19 in lower-income countries than in rich countries.
This nightmare was preventable. But when our leaders prioritize pharma profiteering over human life, inequality is the outcome.
That’s why today, on World AIDS Day, we joined with allies and organized a protest outside the White House and in a concurrent online action. We demand President Biden and Congress invest $100 million for the South African mRNA hub, increase PEPFAR’s budget by $750 million this year, and announce the creation of and funding for a global and domestic response plan for Long COVID and Associated Diseases.
Please take a moment today to send a message to President Biden and Congress demanding they fund critical global and domestic health measures to keep our communities safe.
As our new Associate Director of U.S. Policy and Advocacy, Alyson Bancroft, wrote in her op-ed today in The Hill, pandemics don’t happen in isolation, the end of AIDS is possible, but Congress needs to fund it. Right now, Biden and Congress are guaranteeing pandemics will continue to be chronic. It doesn’t have to be this way. In 2023, we must end a decade of deadly flat funding for PEPFAR and win a more equitable COVID-19 response that acknowledges the ongoing suffering and death caused by policies that let these threats ravage our communities. The stakes have never been higher.