|Carson Statement on World AIDS Day|
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congressman André Carson issued the following statement today in recognition of World AIDS Day.
"Since the first World AIDS Day more than two decades ago, we've seen tremendous progress in the battle against this life-threatening disease. Our investments in awareness and research are paying off with more and more people gaining access to life-saving treatments, while millions more are taking proactive steps to protect themselves from HIV/AIDS.
"But make no mistake-our nation and the global community still has an uphill battle when it comes to finally eradicating the HIV/AIDS epidemic. This is especially true within our minority population in the United States. Of the nearly one million Americans living with HIV/AIDS, nearly half are African American. Among young people ages 13 to 24, African Americans account for 55 percent of all HIV infections. And, tragically, HIV/AIDS has been a leading cause of death among black women, ages 25 to 34.
"My colleagues and I recognize the urgency to ramp up the fight against this destructive disease. Working with President Obama, Congress passed into law the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Treatment Extension Act, which will extend and improve essential care and treatment for more than half a million low-income Americans living with the disease. And through the leadership of the Congressional Black Caucus, this legislation bolsters the Minority AIDS Initiative and makes significant investments in care, treatment and prevention services directed at minority populations. And of course, when we finally deliver comprehensive health-care reform to the American people, everyone impacted by this disease will be assured access to life-saving medical care, with no threat of being shut out due to a pre-existing condition.
"Through our commitment to awareness and our dedication to investing in top-flight medical research, we've come a long way in our battle against HIV/AIDS. But we remain far from our goal of completely halting this epidemic. That's why we must recommit today and every day to educate ourselves and loved-ones, focus on prevention, and do all we can care for those who face the daily struggle of living with HIV/AIDS."
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