When You Speak out for an AIDS-free Generation, Congress Listens
By Katie Lapides Coester | October 28, 2013
We put forward a call to action to our supporters in the United States– contact your senators and ask that they support the U.S. global HIV/AIDS response -- and you answered, overwhelmingly. Thousands of letters were sent to Capitol Hill expressing the critical importance of the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program-- with constituents urging their senators to become leaders on global HIV/AIDS issues.
The PEPFAR Stewardship and Oversight Act of 2013 will extend key provisions of a program that has saved millions of lives for the last decade. The bill sends a strong signal that the United States is firmly committed to the fight against HIV/AIDS. Read more about the legislation here.
We cannot stress the importance of direct advocacy –congressional leaders are more likely to act when they know issues are important to their constituents. Our founder, Elizabeth Glaser, worked tirelessly with policymakers to ensure that children were not left behind in the HIV/AIDS epidemic. She had meetings on the Hill, wrote letters to senators, and delivered a moving personal testimony about her family’s struggle with HIV/AIDS at the Democratic National Convention in 1992. Reaching out to your elected officials on these critical issues continues that legacy.
Keep the momentum building: the legislation is still open for co-sponsorship; contact your senators today and ask them to support the bill.
Katie Coester is EGPAF’s Public Policy Officer based in Washington, D.C.