White House to Hold Public Forums on National HIV/AIDS Strategy

The White House is planning a public forum on its national strategy with regard to HIV/AIDS:

Whaids "On Monday, September 21st, the next National HIV/AIDS Community Discussion will be held in Washington, D.C. These Discussions, hosted by the White House Office of National AIDS Policy (ONAP), offer the public a chance to provide input as the White House works to fulfill the President’s pledge to develop a National HIV/AIDS Strategy (NHAS).

With more than 56,000 new HIV infections occurring in the United States each year, the President believes that we must re-focus national attention on the domestic epidemic. He has articulated three goals for the NHAS: reducing HIV incidence, increasing access to care and optimizing health outcomes, and reducing HIV-related health disparities. The national HIV/AIDS community discussions are just one mechanism for engaging the American people and obtaining input. The Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS (PACHA) will also provide input, and public comments submitted to the ONAP website will also be taken into consideration."

Jeffrey S. Crowley, M.P.H., Director, White House Office of National AIDS Policy,

Dr. Shannon Hader, Director of DC Department of Health’s HIV/AIDS Administration, and 
Wallace Corbett (Moderator), DC Ryan White Planning Council are participating at the discussion, which will be held at  The University of the District of Columbia Auditorium — building 46 on this map, on September 21 from 6-8 pm.

The discussion is open to the public, with an RSVP. Those interested can sign up here. The forum will be moving to other cities as well in the future — Albuquerque, NM, Columbia, SC, Ft. Lauderdale, FL, Houston, TX, Jackson, MS, Los Angeles, CA, Minneapolis, MN, New York, NY, Oakland, CA, Puerto Rico, San Francisco, CA, and Virgin Islands — but only D.C. has been scheduled thus far.


  1. Auntie_Dogma says

    25 years plus into the AIDS epidemic and 9 months after Obama takes office, the clue phone finally rings in the Oval Office?

    So, we have a fierce advocate for gay rights, although we may never see any such rights.

    We have a fierce advocate for healthcare reform who’s bending over for Big Healthcare and Big Pharma.

    And now people with HIV/AIDS have a fierce advocate for a national HIV/AIDS strategy?

    Forgive me if I’m just a tad underwhelmed.

  2. Trog says

    Though I am thankful these forums will bring more attention to HIV/AIDS in America, the time for talking is over. How much more information gathering do these people need to do? Almost three decades into the epidemic, we know what the problems are and what solutions work.

    Community forums like this allow the politicians to look like they’re doing something for the community without actually delivering tangible results.

    Case in point: the Obama Administration failed to lift the fed ban on funding needle exchange–when SCIENCE has proved it works and other countries successfully employ them. Plus, the administration has failed to lift the travel ban that keeps those living with HIV from visiting the country–a ban that George Bush had started to lift before leaving office.

    And yet, it’s a great gesture to include the community for input. But I’ll believe they’re serious about this subject when they deliver a national AIDS strategy.

    PS: In order for foreign countries–such as those in Africa–to receive U.S. money to combat AIDS, the countries must develop a national AIDS strategy (a plan to combat the virus). And yet, the United States does not have such a strategy for its own people. Let’s hope the current administration changes this embarrassment.




    “works to”

    “pledge to”


    “in the future”

    In other WORDS, they are just fucking blah talking about fucking talking about blah blah blah. And they’re taking the months and months and months and spending the totally unnecessary money it will take to travel to and from 13 different cities to do it.

    In other WORDS, they aren’t DOing anything— the motto of the Obama administration: circuses with no bread.

    Auntie’s right. After nearly 30 years, I bet there are already shelves full of dusty well-researched reports on what needs to be done. They don’t need to TALK about it, and certainly not in a drawn out traveling dog and pony show any more than they need to TALK about whether or not DADT should and can and how be dumped.

    Pitiful. Just goddamn pitiful.

  4. says

    Let’s see… and how many such fora did Bush hold? Or did he do ANYTHING about AIDS in THIS country (as opposed to safely off there in Africa, where it’s not mostly gay people affected)?

    Would you rather they NOT talk about it at all? We can go back to Reagan. That worked really well.

  5. Strepsi says

    Good intentions, TERRIBLE idea. Opens a platform for violent wingnuts to provide the “other side” to this so-called “debate”.. as if it should even be a debate. THESE FORUMS SERVE NO PURPOSE. As the Town Halls showed, the American public is by and large too stupid and/or religious to deserve a say in civil federal platforms. This is why everything is not decided by public referendum — we are supposed to elect or appoint people who are smarter than us, i.e. EXPERTS. What does the American “public” know about AIDS? Half of them don’t even believe in science! Is it relevant? Do you care what the fuck Joe The Plumber thinks of AIDS strategy?

  6. Trog says

    re: strepsi

    I believe the forums are for the HIV-affected community to tell the administration about their personal experiences and what they would like to see in the national AIDS policy.

    Who knows whether the right-wing nutjobs will show up. I doubt they care enough about the disease to even stage a protest.

  7. bigolpoofter says

    Whether one believes that these events are for-show or will be truly impactful, it is important that Queermen and transfolk, people living with HIV, and service providers show in large numbers to express their frustration with Ryan White funding, prevention efforts, and the continual sexphobic policies bounded by Section 2500 of the Public Health Service Act.